Dr. Rajiv Lall, MD and CEO of IDFC Bank, talks to The Hindu after the bank's recent acquisition of Gramin Vidiyal. Excerpts from the interview:
"Why did you acquire Grama Vidiyal?
As a new bank, our ambition is to become a mass retail bank in five years. Our foremost challenge is customer acquisition. We want to acquire customers at the least possible cost. So this particular transaction offered very compelling opportunity. We will acquire 1.2 million customers in a rapidly growing customer segment, in a geography which is predominantly south-based. Between, October (when started operations as bank) and March, we have got 65,000 customers of our own. I aim to take that figure to at least 1.5 million by March 2017.
What was the criterion for the acquisition? Were there other suitors?
Mostly it is the cultural compatibility. People are critically important. I know Mr. Devaraj (CMD of Grama Vidiyal) who is an extraordinary person. He has built the entire organization. When we met first time, we saw very much eye to eye. We had looked at the landscape (before finalising with Grama).
What is your medium-term roadmap for the bank?
Within 48 months, more than 60 per cent advances and 22 per cent liabilities will come from retail banking. And I aim to increase the pace of customer acquisition."
Read the full interview here.