All-women StanChart branch in city

Kolkata, May 30 | Updated: May 31 2007, 05:30am hrs
Standard Chartered Bank has opened the country's first branch manned only by women staff in Kolkata. The initiative has been taken after getting specific feedback from women customers that they would feel comfortable dealing with women staff.

"Close to 30% of our customers are women, a fact which has inspired us to launch this initiative based on feedback from our growing number of female account holders for increased focus on offerings for women," Rajashree Nambiar, head of branch banking in Standard Chartered Bank, said.

She inaugurated this unique branch at Jodhpur Park in downtown Kolkata. "We strive to prove an environment to our customers in which they feel comfortable," she said.

According to Nambiar, the bank could consider opening similar branches elsewhere in the country if this initiative turns successful. All the 13 employees at the branch, including the security guard, are women, she said. Banking services are open to male customers also, she added.

The branch will also hold regular workshops for women on financial planning and investment advisory.

It will also offer a no-frills fully loaded account with no minimum balance requirement, a facility to be available exclusively for customers of this particular branch.