RBI lifts ban on HDFC Financial institution issuing bank cards


India’s banking regulator late Tuesday lifted an eight-month ban on HDFC Financial institution from issuing new bank cards in digital endorsement of recent chief government Shashidhar Jagdishan’s efforts to transition to a strong know-how platform, which concurrently ensures compliance and establishes the future-ready credentials of the nation’s most valued lender.

Easing of the ban on new bank cards opens up a high-yielding income stream for the financial institution that has harnessed growing mortgage urge for food from people to construct a low-risk and sturdy retail franchise over twenty years. The most important issuer of bank cards in India, HDFC Financial institution misplaced market share prior to now few months. The variety of excellent bank cards dropped from 15.4 million in November 2020 to 14.8 million in June 2021.

An official at HDFC Financial institution confirmed the lifting of the curbs by the Reserve Financial institution of India (RBI).

‘Lender to Regain’

However another restrictions on introduction of recent digital merchandise stay relevant. It wasn’t instantly clear what these curbs relate to.

Analysts stated HDFC Financial institution will regain some misplaced floor and cross-sell extra aggressively within the bank card enterprise the place it stays the native market chief.

“In addition to the constructive influence on enterprise, this can be a huge morale enhance throughout the financial institution that will have been hit as a result of ban,” stated Asutosh Mishra, head of analysis at Ashika Securities. “It permits the financial institution to cross-sell to its massive retail buyer base and leverage the assorted partnerships it has throughout shopper merchandise.”

On December 3 final yr, RBI barred HDFC Financial institution from issuing new bank cards and introducing new digital merchandise after a number of glitches linked to digital banking, playing cards and funds on the financial institution’s platform had been reported prior to now two years.

Rivals Gained Mkt Share

HDFC Financial institution misplaced market share in bank cards whereas its rivals gained. Complete playing cards issued by SBI Playing cards rose to 12 million in June 2021 from 11.2 million in November 2020, whereas the variety of complete excellent playing cards at ICICI Financial institution rose to 11 million.

The ban on bank card issuance compounded the challenges for brand spanking new CEO Jagdishan. Within the financial institution’s annual common assembly earlier this yr, Jagdishan apologised to shareholders for the ban however added that the lender had taken this as a possibility to enhance its know-how platforms. “Now we have now launched into a scale altering know-how adoption and transformation agenda to assist drive our bold future progress plans,” he had stated then. In a name with the media on the finish of June, the financial institution’s senior administration expressed confidence that it’ll make up for the misplaced time by cross-selling as soon as the ban on issuing new playing cards is lifted.

Outdated Know-how Changed

Previously eight months, the financial institution has put an early warning system to handle massive volumes, de-clogged processes and changed outdated know-how as a part of its short- and long-term plan submitted to RBI. In a report final month, Macquarie analyst Suresh Ganapathy stated the addition of financial savings and present accounts will assist the financial institution make up for the lack of enterprise since December.

“The (lifting of the) ban has come earlier than the festive season which begins from September onwards in India…So the juggernaut can roll with full power and launch bank cards, enticing schemes inside its ecosystem companions and be a power to reckon with,” Ganapathy stated in a fast abstract word revealed Tuesday.

He estimates that the financial institution added 3.65 million legal responsibility accounts from January to June, and this buyer base can now be harnessed to cross-sell bank cards.


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