Federal Bank, a leading Indian private sector bank, said on Sunday that it would launch full-fledged wholesale banking services for catering to trade and industries from the Dubai International Financial Centre this year.
Ganesh Sankaran, the newly-appointed executive director of the lender, said the bank would also make its debut in Bahrain this year.
The DIFC branch opening announcement comes three months after the bank launched its second UAE representative office in Dubai as part of a strategy to expand footprints in the Gulf to serve its fast growing overseas clients estimated at over 800,000.
Other new overseas markets the bank plans to enter include Qatar, Kuwait and Singapore, Sankaran said at a Press conference. Also present was Deepak Govind, deputy general manager and chief representative of the bank in the Gulf.
The Kerala-headquartered bank, which accounts for 14.2 per cent of the almost $70 billion remittances going to India, opened its first GCC representative office in Abu Dhabi years ago.
“For Federal Bank, since its foundation days, the NRI franchise has proven to be the very backbone of its business model. Our bank has one of the highest partnerships with other banks and remittance agencies that enables any NRI in the Gulf to reach even his remotest village/town back in India,” said Sankaran.
He said the bank, one of the fastest-growing private sector banks at 25-30 per cent balance sheet growth, seeks to function more as an extended family of the NRIs at their home country while extending services to him. “We make it a point to meet up with our NRI customers in the ‘Together We Gather’ meetings that we conduct every year to gather first hand information on the needs of our clientele.”
Sankaran said the bank, which accounted for over four per cent of Indian banking sector with a business of ?360 billion last year, would continue to increase the bandwidth and access of its products and services in the Gulf.
“As far as the Gulf-India business corridor is concerned, Federal Bank is a partner of choice for investments from leading houses. While we provide financial assistance and advisory to our clients back home, we also ensure that they enjoy the best of services in their respective countries, through the increasing digitisation of our services,” said Sankaran.
He said the bank is spreading it footprints to other geographies including Canada, Australia, the US and the UK, where the NRI population is quite significant.
He said the bank with a network of 1,252 branches in India, enjoys the trust and confidence of more than seven million customers across the world. Recent years witnessed great breakthroughs in banking technology at Federal Bank.
“We recently rolled out our UPI [Unified Payments Interface]-based POS machine, which is an easy solution for making digital payments. The POS machine makes life simpler for the payer and facilitates instant credit to one’s account. Fedbook Selfie, a facility to open account with smartphone, while at home, and Scan N Pay, an app that enables point-of-sale, lightning-fast payments without the drudgery of keying in account numbers’ are other innovations that have set the trend in the Industry,” said Sankaran.
Govind said apart from the host of exclusive facilities, the bank also offers NRI clientele the option to remit in 12 different currencies.
Federal Bank has a well-diversified national footprint with strong presence in Kerala and growing at a fast clip in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Punjab.