Investments in technology critical for existence of banks in future, says Zarin Daruwala

Daruwala was speaking on Banking: Present & Future at a lecture which had been organised by the Pune International Centre (PIC) in association with Symbiosis International University (deemed).

pune Updated: Jan 17, 2018 22:58 IST
Ananya Barua
Ananya Barua
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,technology,banks
Zarin Daruwala, CEO, Standard Chartered Bank, India, delivering the Banking: Present & Future lecture at Symbiosis International on Senapati Bapat road on Wednesday.(RAHUL RAUT/HT PHOTO)

How successful India’s banks will be in the future will largely depend on how efficiently they use technology to address customer aspirations,” Zarin Daruwala, chief executive officer (CEO) of Standard Chartered Bank, India, said on Wednesday during a lecture.

Daruwala was speaking on Banking: Present & Future at a lecture which had been organised by the Pune International Centre (PIC) in association with Symbiosis International University (deemed).

Daruwala said, “The bank customer of tomorrow is going to be extremely tech-savvy and banks will have to invest heavily in technology to be able to meet the needs of this customer offering him services ‘on the go’.”

SB Mujumdar, chancellor, Symbiosis International University (deemed); Vijay Kelkar, vice-president of PIC; Rajani Gupte, vice-chancellor, SIU; Vidya Yeravdekar, director of Symbiosis Group of Educational Institutions and Prashant Girbane, honorary director, PIC, were present at the lecture.

“Banking sector in India is passing through challenging times as the issue of non-performing assets (NPAs) has become serious and needs to be addressed on a priority,” said Daruwala.

She further expounded that the insolvency legislation and creation of bad loans settlement mechanisms such as the National Company Law Tribunal will help banks to recover overdue loans sooner and help improve the recovery rate across the banking sector. She was positive about recapitalisation of public sector banks, believing that it will improve capacity to absorb losses due to settlements, and to lend afresh.

According to Daruwala, technology is an important medium to help banks improve their lending function.

“The problem of huge NPAs was in part caused by the lack of timely warning signs available to banks and that is where technology can play a huge role,” said Daruwala.

“Not only can the modern technology help in making the early lending decision but can also help in the ongoing credit monitoring.

“This will reduce significantly the risk of a loan going bad,” she said.

Daruwala explained how public sector banks like State Bank of India (SBI) have made massive investments in technology and have been nimble in responding to changes.

Commenting on the need for banks to make themselves technologically updated in order to cope up with the evolution of the world into a digital space, Daruwala said, “Non-banking finance companies (NBFCs), who have the flexibility to build technology platforms from the scratch, have emerged as a strong challenge to banks in the retail segment and banks will have to match the reach, agility and flexibility of NBFCs to keep their lead in the retail lending space.”

First Published: Jan 17, 2018 22:57 IST