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Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank eyes to expand borrower profile; plans to enter infrastructure, retail lending

Mumbai: Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank (MSC Bank) is looking to enter infrastructure and retail lending segments, to broaden its borrower profile, a senior bank official said on Thursday.

The bank continues to be under a Reserve Bank of India-appointed administrator, after its elected board was alleged to have mismanaged the bank.

"We cannot have all our lending to the sugar factories (cooperatives) alone. What if they go down? Therefore, we have decided to diversify and start infra and retail lending," its administrator Vidyadhar Anaskar told reporters here.

 Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank eyes to expand borrower profile; plans to enter infrastructure, retail lending

Representational image. Reuters

Anaskar said MSC Bank will focus on automobile, home and personal loans under the retail segment, while the infrastructure loans will be for projects which will benefit the state.

He said co-operative banks are allowed to write unsecured loans of up to Rs 2 lakh, which can go up if a salary-linked account is attached to it.

When asked if it is looking to open more branches beyond 57, he said this task will be accomplished through mergers.

It is conducting diligence and negotiations to merge two struggling co-operative banks, one each based in Mumbai and Pune, with itself, he said.

MSC Bank has reported a net profit of Rs 316 crore for the fiscal year 2018-19, up from the year-ago period's Rs 201 crore, while the stock of gross non-performing assets improved to 7.35 percent from 9.91 percent in the Rs 19,700 crore book.

Its capital adequacy stood at 16 percent as against the mandatory requirement of nine percent, while the overall net worth was Rs 2,717 crore.

When asked for a timeline by when the bank will go back to being run by an elected board, Anaskar said the matter is sub judice and will be decided by the Bombay High Court.

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Updated Date: May 16, 2019 19:15:57 IST