IndusInd Due Diligence On Centurion Only After Concerns Are Addressed

Mumbai, November 28: | Updated: Nov 29 2002, 05:30am hrs
IndusInd Bank (IndusInd) will conduct a detailed due diligence of Centurion Bank (Centurion) only after all the concerns, that it had pointed out to the beleaguered banks management, are addressed.

Sources close to the developments told FE that most concerns have found satisfactory response from the concerned parties, however, discussions are continuing on a couple of these issues which are expected to be sorted out shortly.

IndusInd has already conducted a quick external survey of the operations of Centurion. The list of concerns was prepared on the basis of this initial survey.

When contacted IndusInd Banks managing director Bhaskar Ghose said, talks are on with the management of Centurion for the proposed merger. However, it is premature at this stage to discuss the modalities of the merger. He added that IndusInd is interested in the merger because of two benefits which are exclusive to his bank in case it acquires Centurion.

Centurion is the only other bank in the country which uses the same core banking software platform MICES as used by IndusInd. Also, the branch network of the two banks are largely complementary. Much before the merger with Centurion was , we had a target of reaching 100 branches in a short period of time to carry out our retail business, which is a new area for us. It is a coincidence that Centurion has a network of 59 branches, which is largely complementary to our network of 41 branches, said Mr Ghose.

Another factor that lured IndusInd to the long-on-the-block bank is its strong retail book with assets close to Rs 850 crore. IndusInd has adopted the strategy of growing its retail book through portfolio acquisition and Centurions retail operations fit in well with the bank.