Corporation Bank keen on boosting lending to small units

Mangalore-based Corporation Bank is planning several initiatives aimed at boosting the growth of the SME (small and medium enterprises) sector.Of the targeted Rs 35,000 crore credit portfolio for the priority sector during the current fiscal, the bank is looking to lend around Rs 15,500 crore to the SME segment.

Speaking toBusiness Linehere on Wednesday, Mr Ajai Kumar, Chairman and Managing Director, said that the bank is giving focused attention to the growth of SME sector by cashing in on the big opportunity available in the industrial ancillary units in the auto, IT, leather, food processing and textile sectors.

He said that SME credit portfolio of the bank was at around Rs 12,500 crore at the end of December. “We want to reach a figure of Rs 15,500 crore in SME lending this fiscal,” he said. Mr Ajai Kumar said an SME beneficiary is one who manufactures goods for big companies and will, therefore, require money.

He said Corporation Bank has created and launched several niche SME products to meet the needs and expectations of entrepreneurs. The bank has also adopted cluster-based approach for focused lending to SMEs. The bank, he said, has signed an agreement with SIDBI for financing SMEs. Added to this, the bank also has opened specialised SME branches.

As a process re-engineering measure, the bank proposes to establish ‘SME processing cells' in all zonal offices in the country, Mr Ajai Kumar said. Under this, customers can go to any branch and submit their loan proposals, and the cell will process them, he added.