SBBJ aims to touch Rs 1.5 lakh cr biz by 2013-end

SBBJ aims to touch Rs 1.5 lakh cr biz by 2013-end Mumbai: State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, an associate of the SBI, is targeting over 20 percent jump in its overall size in the next 12 months, and hoping to touch Rs 1,50,000 crore mark on balance sheet by December 2013, a top official said.

"Our balance sheet was at Rs 1,23,000 crore as of December 31, 2012, and we are aiming to take it to Rs 1,50,000 crore by the end of 2013 December," State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur (SBBJ) Managing Director Shiva Kumar said over phone.

The Jaipur-headquartered bank, one of the four associate banks yet to be merged with the parent State Bank of India, will end the fiscal 2012-13 with a balance sheet of Rs 1,30,000 crore, on account of loan pick-up and deposit mobilisations in the last quarter.

"The first two quarters were not so good on credit growth and we ended up having more deposit growth than credit growth. But the things have been improving in the last (third) quarter onwards," he said.

The increase has taken bank's advances growth to 16.5 percent as of December 31, on par with the deposit growth, Kumar said, sounding confident that the bank will meet its targeted 17 percent advances growth for the fiscal.

SBBJ is concentrating on the retail advances, largely resilient to the economic troubles, to drive credit growth.

Kumar said he expects a 0.25 percent cut in the repo rate by the Reserve Bank in its policy announcement this month.

In that case, SBBJ will respond by cutting deposit rate by 0.50 percent which will also help it gain on its net interest margin, which has suffered because of aggression shown in cutting lending rates, he said.

Kumar said he expects the bank's Net Interest Margin (NIM) to fall marginally by 0.10 percent for the third quarter as it could not usher in a deposit rate cut during the quarter, though it cut the base rate or the minimum rate of lending.

On merger with SBI, Kumar said the process remains on the cards, but there is nothing final or currently being discussed.

"Mostly, they will wait for the new bank licences to be allotted before taking a call on the merger. Let the new lenders come on the block and then they will decide to consolidate SBI," he said.

SBBJ has prepared plans to introduce mini-automated teller machines to facilitate swift withdrawals in the rural areas. It is also keen on foraying into the merchant acquisition space dominated by private banks.

"Merchant acquisitions help boost our current account deposits. We have started adding merchants two months back and already have 120 establishments with our point of sale terminals and aim to take the number to 1,000 by June."

With schemes such as the direct cash transfers increasing the reach of banking in rural areas, he said the bank has evolved a new mini ATM concept.

"It will be like a POS (point of sale) machine operated by a bank staffer, which will reduce the time taken to transact. Though it will be operational only during banking hours, we feel it will be of lot of help as people will be spared the paperwork like cheques for withdrawals and also get human assistance unlike at full-fledged ATM."

PTI