ICICI overtakes SBI in assets in overseas business

ICICI overtakes SBI in assets in overseas business

Mumbai, 17 September ICICI Bank has recently overtaken SBI, its public sector rival and the country’s biggest lender, in terms of assets in overseas business. ICICI Bank’s asset base has grown to about $19 billion in 18 countries, compared to SBI’s $15-16 billion in 35 countries.

“We still have to do a lot, given our potential," said Kochhar, who is responsible for the bank’s overseas business.

“We are registering a 25% growth per annum, she said, adding that this rate should double the assets size in about three years.

When asked what was driving the overseas business of the bank, Kochhar said: “It is India-led growth that was driving our business to those geographies... Indian companies are involved in significant M&As, expansion, setting up businesses abroad and the bank was getting huge business from this..."

“Besides, we have built our scale to meet their (clients) requirements," she added.

“Out of the 20 billion loan syndication last year for Indian companies’ overseas M&A deals, deals worth $9 billion were done by ICICI Bank. Two-three years back it used to be only foreign banks, now we are at number one position in syndicated financing," Kochhar said.

“We had strong working relationship with these companies (for whom we raised loans). While this helped us quite a lot, had we not geared ourselves with new skills, it would not have been possible...We took the step for re-gearing ourselves (with required skill sets)."

While asserting that ICICI Bank aspires to join the top-25 league of global banks in five years from now, Kochhar said the bank was still small by global standards. The bank was involved in up to one per cent of global M&A business.

“If we stretch ourselves, we can get there," she said.