Introducing a new type of organizational structure in urban cooperative banking, Saraswat Co-operative Bank has created two Managing Director (MD) positions following the retirement of Smita Sandhane as MD on March 31, 2022.

India’s largest urban co-operative bank, which recorded around 7% year-on-year growth in total business (deposits plus advances) to ₹71,573 crore in FY22, now has a managing director head of operations (Arti A Patil) and another head of business (Abhijit V Prabhu).

“… In accordance with the prevailing standards of the RBI (Reserve Bank of India), the Bank contacted the RBI four months before the expiration of the tenure (five years) of the then Managing Director, for the appointment of a a new general manager.

“To enable focused attention on the business and operational aspects, the need has arisen to appoint two managing directors to look after these verticals,” Saraswat Bank said in its annual report.

Consequently, a communication was made to the RBI for the appointment of two managing directors.

The appointment of Patil and Prabhu as MDs is effective from April 1, 2022. Patil and Prabhu were Chief Managing Directors, heading the Bank’s Treasury and Retail Banking verticals, respectively, before their elevation as an MD.

The senior management level of the Bank consists of a joint CEO (LR Samant) and a deputy CEO (AM Khot).

Target 15 lakh SB accounts

Meanwhile, Gautam E Thakur, Chairman, observed that the Bank has set a target to open 15 lakh new savings accounts over the next few years – 4 lakh accounts in FY23.5 lakh accounts in FY24 and 6 lakh accounts in FY25.

Thakur pointed out that the savings accounts thus opened will serve as the basis for the overall growth of the company in the future.

The proportion of Low Cost Current Account, Savings Account (CASA) deposits in total deposits fell from 30.59% at the end of March 2021 to 31.69% at the end of March 2022, according to the annual report of the bank.

The bank is making strenuous efforts to reconnect with customers in cases where accounts have become inoperable, the president said.

Saraswat Bank will focus on retail commercial borrowers (with credit facilities in the range of ₹1 crore to ₹10 crore) seeking active dialogue with them, partnering with them (taking care of their credit as well as business needs), extending the right advice to grow their businesses and supporting them with adequate credit at every level of growth. “In other words, we’re going to hold on to those borrowers who are our future SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) customer base, ensuring mutual prosperity for years to come,” Thakur said.

Published on

June 11, 2022