London, Oct. 9 (PTI): Standard Chartered Bank plans to undertake a massive drive to increase its credit cards clientele and branches in the country.
The bank, which integrated with Grindlays Bank last month, will increase the number of its branches from 61 at present to 80 in 2003 and 100 by 2004,” Jaspal Bindra, chief executive officer of the bank in India told reporters here yesterday.
StanChart already has 1.3 million credit card subscribers and the number was growing at the rate of 35,000 per month, he said, adding it has earned a net profit of $ 76 million in the first six months of this year.
The bank, which is the largest international banking group in India, with a combined customer base of 2.4 million in retail banking and over 1,200 corporate customers, recently appointed veteran cricketer Kapil Dev as its brand ambassador.
“The bank is the leading credit card issuer in India and has several firsts to its credit. These include issuance of the first global credit card in India, the first photo-card and the first picture card. Its card division is also the first in South Asia to be accorded the ISO 9002 certification,” he said.
Bindra said the bank offered a full complement of trade finance products, including export credit in foreign currency, export letters of credit confirmations, merchant trade and buyer credits.
Two trade deals for Jet Airways and $ 750 million of Reliance Industries Limited were named trade deals of the year by trade finance.
“It is one of the few banks in India to offer services like channel financing, project export and service export approvals and sponsorships,” he said.
He said the Greenwich survey for 2001 nominated Standard Chartered the “best cash management service quality bank” in India.
Bindra said Standard Chartered Mutual Fund was one of the largest and fastest growing debt funds in the market.
“Standard Chartered Mutual Fund is the only fund house that focuses only on the debt segment and prides itself on having developed one of the finest interest rate tracking models,” he said.