Bandhan Financial Services, the city-based micro-finance institution which got the in-principle banking licence from Reserve Bank of India, will shortly appoint consultants for facilitating its transformation into a bank.
"We are talking to various consultancy firms like KPMG, BCG, McKinsey and Ernst & Young, among others, for appointing a consultant. We will shortly give a mandate to one of them," CMD of Bandhan Financial Services, Chandra Sekhar Ghosh told PTI.
The mandate to the consultancy firm would be on how to transform the MFI into a full-fledged bank.
"The consultancy firms have a huge experience in these matters. So it is necessary to seek outside help for smooth transition", Ghosh said.
Besides this, the MFI is also in the process of hiring IT consultants for putting in place the required infrastructure needed for running a bank.
He said the appointed IT consultants would, among other things, assist in providing the necessary software and hardware for connecting the branches of the proposed bank online.
On getting the suggestions from the consultants, Bandhan Financial Services would go for hiring specialists to fill the gaps in the existing manpower strength.
"We hope that we will be able to start the operations within the stipulated 18 months given to us by the RBI," he said.
In reply to a query, Ghosh said there was no immediate need for capital. "The regulatory capital requirement to start a bank was Rs 500 crore and our networth is Rs 1,100 crore. The bank will be promoted by Bandhan Financial Services," he said.
Out of the present 2016 branches of Bandhan, 70 per cent are in the rural belt, Ghosh said adding some of them would be restructured.
Presently, Bandhan is serving 55 lakh borrowers and has 13,000 employees on its rolls.
Bandhan and IDFC had competed with 23 other applicants like Aditya Birla Nuvo, Bajaj Finserv, Indiabulls and L&T Finance among others for securing the in-principle banking licence.