Focusing deposits, State Bank of Mauritius plans major branch expansion

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Published: March 4, 2019 6:56 AM

State Bank of Mauritius is targeting to grow its deposit base in the country now, and will grow its branch network by four-times to 16 in two years, top officials have said.

Focusing deposits, SBM plans major branch expansionFocusing deposits, SBM plans major branch expansion

State Bank of Mauritius is targeting to grow its deposit base in the country now, and will grow its branch network by four-times to 16 in two years, top officials have said. The bank, which had earlier revealed a desire to grow its Indian lending book to Rs 5,000 crore, will not offer aggressive interest rates as it goes about growing the deposit franchise, managing director and chief executive Sidharth Rath told PTI. He said the bank has four branches at present, which will be doubled to eight by the end of FY20 and to 16 by the end of FY21.

Details on where the branches will be or hiring were not shared. When asked if it will offer higher interest rates on savings deposits, he said the rates will be competitive but the bank does not want to get into any trap, indicating that it will not be at an elevated level. It can be noted that DBS, one of the other major foreign lenders to have received the license to operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary, has been focusing on higher interest rate to attract customers.

On the Rs 5,000-crore target, its group chief executive Andrew Bainbridge said the bank does not believe in chasing any number and would rather want to avoid the mistakes that can happen while chasing a number. Its loan book stands at Rs 800 crore now and the group has invested Rs 500 crore as per the mandatory requirements at the time of turning a WOS in December last which gives a lot of firepower for growth. Bainbridge said the bank considers India to be a complex market and will be focusing on specific client groups to grow.

Rath said the upper end of the SME segment and the mid corporates will be chased by the bank. Along with loan book expansion opportunities, it will also look at other products like custodian services, clearing and settlement, and cross-border advisory services both in the equity and debt, which accrue fees, Rath said.

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