Reported by: banking|Updated: December 7, 2020
The soon-to-be-introduced platforms will help the bank in mobilizing clients online:
The Union Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises had announced the ‘Interest Subvention Scheme for MSMEs’ in November 2018 for scheduled commercial banks and the government had in March 2020 decided to include cooperative banks also as eligible lending institutions. The coverage of the scheme is limited to all term loans/working capital loans to the extent of `10 million.
A.P. Mahesh Cooperative Urban Bank is providing need-based, hassle-free, financial assistance at competitive rates for both working capitals (to meet day-to-day operational costs) and term loan (for the acquisition of fixed assets) for the smooth running of MSMEs. Repayment tenures of the term loans range from 36 months to 120 months. The bank’s Managing Director and CEO Umesh Chand Asawa says the average ticket size of the bank’s MSME loan portfolio is `3.5 million and the bank caters to a wide variety of customers both under manufacturing and service sectors. “We have 45 branches across 4 states – Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Maharashtra – and the bulk of the MSME portfolio is in Telangana state,” he adds.
MAHESH EMERGENCY CREDIT
The validity of the scheme has now been extended till 31 March 2021 and accordingly cooperative banks are sanctioning fresh or incremental term loan/working capital limits with effect from 3 March 2020. Says Asawa: “The MSME sector is the worst sufferer in the economy. Without waiting for the inclusion of cooperative banks in the credit guarantee scheme announced by the government for the MSME sector, we have extended our helping hand to MSME customers by way of Mahesh Emergency Credit Line, ie, additional finance to the tune of 20% on their limits/outstanding balances as on a specified date, without insisting on additional collateral security. We have sanctioned FITL to 60 MSME units amounting to `66.63 million for the deferred interest from March 2020 to August 2020 to be repayable before 31 March 2021.”
The bank has extended the one-time rehabilitation/restructuring plan as per RBI guidelines for units which we impacted by the pandemic within the timelines stipulated. “We have applied reducing margins on the stocks/receivables held by MSMEs and also provided need-based additional credit facility wherever applicable,” says Asawa.
Mahesh Bank is a customer-centric bank. It has been its singular endeavor to bring technology that is simple in approach and impact positively and enhance customer comfort. All its technological products aim at improvement in ease of availing of banking services for its customers. “We are working on such solutions where the interaction of the customer with the bank is through simple mobile applications and delivery mechanism is swift, certain, and trouble-free. Our focus area is customer service and innovative products. In this direction, we are actively considering technologies in the area of data analytics, delivery channels, enhanced customer experience with data-security/safety,” says Asawa.
The bank’s board is supportive in the introduction of various IT initiatives that are customer-centric and its IT road map is to transform all legacy systems and procedures to those built on sound, modern, reliable and IT-backed ones.
In the current financial year, the bank has upgraded its core servers with the latest operating system and the latest version of application software. Says Asawa: “We have enhanced the capabilities of our network infrastructure to sustain the increasing demand. We have also duly upgraded the operating system available in client-level PC systems and added a new class of workstations. All these measures are expected to add 2000 new customers to our bank.”
Upgrade of the software and internet banking application to most modern versions, deployment of BBPS in a big way through not only branch network but also through other modes, the introduction of high-end fraud-risk management systems to safeguard funds of the customers, tab banking to provide doorstep banking to the needy customers are some of the major initiatives the bank has taken up recently.
Asawa says the bank has implemented monitoring procedures to manage upkeep time for all digital delivery channels. With the IT drive steadily focused on customer delight, some of the popular products like missed call and SMS banking and green pin initiatives have received overwhelming positive response from the customers, he adds.
The bank is concentrating on its digital plans like loan originating system (LOS) and tab banking. “We are hopeful of introducing these 2 platforms shortly. This will help us in mobilizing our clients online resulting in speedy processing etc,” says Asawa.