Nandurbar Coop Bank
Also takes up NPCI membership:
The Nandurbar Merchant’s Cooperative Bank operates in Nandurbar and Dhule districts of Maharashtra. Set up in Nandurbar in April 1995 with a single branch by a group of persons committed to social service with a view to provide financial needs of weak and lower class people, the bank today has 6 branches, all profit-making. It does not have any ATMs. Its employee count increased to 53 by the end of 2017-18 from 49 as on March 2016. There has been a marginal dip in the per employee business to `35.5 million in 2017-18 from `37.53 million in the previous year.
However, the bank’s chairman Kishor Wani is optimistic about future plans. Says he: “We have plans to have at least 4 ATMs at branches and one at the head office. We are also interested in having a new business center in Nandurbar district. This year, we have strengthened our staff by engaging 2 persons in the marketing and 1 in the legal departments. We are taking qualified people ensuring that the selected persons have adequate knowledge of finance and accounting and skills of good communication, public relations and ability to implement policy decisions.”
The bank’s major objective is improving the economic standard of people through social interaction. It has given top priority for efficient customer service even as it is facing, like all cooperative banks, cut-throat competition. It believes better service only would retain customers and fetch new ones.
Since establishment, the bank has been receiving ‘A’ rating in audits. One of the unique efforts of the bank has been to mention names of payee/ drawer in the passbook / statement of accounts to facilitate easy identification of every transaction. The regulator has advised other banks to adopt this practice in the interest of better customer service. The bank has been honored with ‘Banco Award’.
Another customer-oriented service of the bank is deposit lockers at select branches. These are available in a variety of sizes to suit customer needs.
Wani says the bank is providing best services to its customers. “At present, we have a customer base of 34,908 and we want to increase this by 1500. Our staff is giving doorstep services to physically handicapped persons by individually visiting their homes. We have a number of firsts and several unique features, including 12-hour uninterrupted service from 8 am to 8 pm in most of our branches. We also provide 360-day banking, including on Sundays and holidays,” he says.
In 2017-18, the bank has been able to achieve an increase in the total amount of loans advanced by `23.42 million from `672.02 million in 2016-17. This has been mainly on account of reduction in interest rates. However, growth in deposits nil also because of lower rates of interest. Al l branches have completed their targets of new borrowers and CASA. The bank has reduced loan processing fees in the last 12 months.
Wani says in 2017-18, the bank has extended loans amounting to the tune of `35 million for self-employed persons and professionals, 13.5 million for retail trade sector and 8.02 million for small business sector. “We have decreased the rate of interest on loans, in comparison to other banks in the area. Yes, there is a possibility of credit growth in 2018-19 as we may cut interest rates further. Similarly, we are going to bear the expenditure of registration of mortgages in 2018-19,” says he.
NEW IT INITIATIVES
The bank began computerization of its branches way back in 1996-97, the first bank in the region to do so. All its branches are automated now and it offers services like SMS messages to customer’s mobile phone for each and every transaction. It also offers facilities like balance inquiry, last 3 transactions, registering cheque book request, cheque status, set default account and different alerts.
“We have taken membership of NPCI now. We will provide ATM services, for which we have tied-up with the HDFC Bank. This will start from 1 September 2018. We are also going to set up NCR ATMs at our branches. The vendor for core banking software is Nagpur-based Trust System & Software. We have 3 IT staffers. We are not giving POS machine facilities as of now, but we would like to offer it soon. We also have plans to set up POS machines at all branches,” says Wani.
The bank has its own data center with IBM Servers in a 42u rack. The server operating system is Microsoft Window Server and the database is Microsoft SQL Server. Besides, it also has its own disaster recovery site with NPLS connectivity and Arcserve software for data replication.”
The bank’s total NPAs for 2017-18 was `413.87 lakh. The gross NPA was 5.95% and net NPA is nil. Wani says he intends to bring down gross NPAs in 2018-19.
Kishor Wani is readying the bank to introduce PoS facility for its customers soon