The Retail Banking segment continues to be a key driver of our overall growth strategy. It encompasses a wide array of products and services across deposits, loans, investments and payment solutions that are delivered through physical channels to our customers.
Axis ASAP ensures that an account is opened in minutes. Not just that, one gets a virtual debit card too for online shopping.
Now customers having pre-approved credit card offers don’t need to wait for their physical cards to arrive to start their online spends. With the virtual card feature, card details are generated as soon as customers submit the final request for pre-approved offer. The card details can be used for all types of online spends.
We launched the debit card EMI programme to 4.6 million customers eligible up to 1 lakhs with key partners (Flipkart, Amazon and Apple, among others). We launched the EMI-on-PoS for Axis Bank credit cardholders for 1,500+ merchants, capturing 800+ pin codes and 3 million credit card base.
*Only includes standard exposure
We are exploring possibilities to strengthen relationship with existing customers across various business verticals by offering more products in tune with their changing requirements.
Some such initiatives are:
Providing innovative services to small and medium enterprises
Offering quality lending opportunities to existing current accounts
Digital on-boarding and activations of Current Account relationships
CMS solutions to existing Current Account customers
Current Account for existing merchant Acquiring customers
Our Corporate Internet Banking (CIB) platform was launched to provide a consolidated access to customers across multiple channels. The major focus has been to migrate existing users from different channels on the new Corporate Internet Banking and ensure the stability for seamless customer experience.
TF Connect and Online Inward Remittance (OIRM) platforms have been launched to manage customers’ trade and forex transactions online. The platforms act as a one-stop solution for handling pending inward remittances and enabling customers to initiate and authenticate trade finance transactions in a paperless environment.
We are providing various innovative banking services to citizens of smart cities through mobile applications, web portals, prepaid cards, electronic data capture terminals and mobile handheld devices.We are also providing hassle-free omni-channel banking experience through our digital payment gateways, mobile banking, debit card and credit card.
We cover all citizen-centric services for Raipur Smart City through a mobile application. Our ‘One Raipur Payment System’ encompasses the collection of all government taxes and transport fares. We are popularising the ‘One Raipur Card’ through collaboration with different retailers. We are providing essential citizen services with respect to collection and payment through online modes.
Our FASTag service, electronic toll collection platform has grown at a fast pace and looks set for an exponential growth, following the Government’s initiative to register all vehicles on Electronic Toll Collection (ETC).
We have also joined hands with many urban local bodies in the country to provide collection and payment services through online mode.
We are involved in managing multiple schemes of Government of India and various state governments through account management and Public Financial Management System (PFMS) across states, districts, blocks and gram panchayats.
The schemes that we undertake comprise Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan, Mid-Day Meal, Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan, Atal Mission for Rejuvenation of Urban Transformation, National Food Security Mission, Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojna and Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojna, among others. We are building on our capabilities and providing last-mile banking services to large swathes of rural India.
We introduced Iris Authentication for Aadhaar-based transactions through micro ATMs. Launched as a pilot project across eight branches, the system will be available across the country in a phased manner. This facility will be useful for customers in semi-urban areas, particularly for senior citizens.
Our focus is on digitising farmer payment transactions in the dairy sector, ensuring timely and accurate payment to farmers, financial inclusion services and small ticket lending, among others. We are providing online digital and auctioning platforms to agricultural Mandi transactions, enabling better crop price discovery.
Our branches continue to be the Bank’s face for millions of retail customers, with close to 4,000 domestic branches (including extension counters) spanning 26 states and six union territories in India. Our branches mobilise deposits from new-to-bank customers and drive the customer engagement strategy across products and services.
Our well-distributed branch network comprises the following: 23% in north, 19% in east, 19% in west, 25% in south and 14% in central. We have 29% branches in metros and 23% in urban and 48% in semi-urban and rural regions as on 31 March, 2019. We continue to focus on enhancing our presence in urban and rural India and increasing our physical presence in both banked and unbanked rural regions. Additionally, our 11,801 ATMs and 4,917 cash deposit machines facilitate banking for millions of citizens.
Our dedicated SME centres span key industrial regions and offer best-in-class lending and other banking services to our SME customers.
Over 700 branches have dedicated relationship managers to handle complex requirements of customers. We have a dedicated team (900+ people) at 402 B-category branches for servicing trade, forex and CMS clients.
We are leveraging the digital ecosystem as a strong lever to enhance service standards and productivity; and the use of advanced analytics and predictive technology is helping us achieve new benchmarks of personalisation. Over 74% of financial and non-financial transactions undertaken by retail customers in fiscal 2019 were digitally enabled and 66% of our Bank’s active customers are digitally active.
On Axis mobile customers can get a simplified narration for their transaction done through the Axis Mobile app. This is a useful and practical innovation where the complexity of sifting through multiple narrations is done real-time at the back end so that our customers get a simplified and less stressful view.
Our mobile application has been further enhanced with the introduction of ‘Axis AHA!’, an artificial intelligence and machine learning powered conversational banking assistant on Axis Mobile (and website) allowing users to perform various financial and non-financial transactions.
We introduced ‘Axis Tap & Pay’ mobile application, which allows customers to pay by just tapping EFC-enabled Android on contactless point-of-sale (PoS). We have been able to maximise on this aspect introducing TAB account opening for individual/sole proprietorship business accounts. This is an online and an interactive platform that resolves documentary gaps through validations and upfront feedback on product delivery, thus improving turnaround time.
Our contribution to society goes far beyond providing trustworthy, reliable and excellent banking services. Axis Bank Foundation (ABF) creates opportunities for ‘Sustainable Livelihoods’. The priority is to lend a helping hand to small, marginal farmers and the landless to enhance their incomes. ABF supports rural livelihoods, drives watershed management and agricultural productivity, livestock enhancement, vocational training and livelihood support for the differently abled.
Building on the experience and learning from phase I of the project that helped create one million livelihoods, ABF now intends to support two million households by 2025.
We support microenterprise development at the household level by addressing critical gaps.
We help upskill young people, including those with special needs, across peri-urban and rural areas through vocational training. With a 60% placement rate, the skilling process has resulted in opening avenues of steady income from secure jobs in inclusive working environments for youth with varied formal education levels.
Axis Dil Se is enabling educational development in some of India’s remotest, most challenging terrains – Leh, Ladakh and Kargil regions in Jammu & Kashmir.
In retail banking, to cater a larger segment of India’s population, we have developed a wide network of fully interconnected retail branches, extension counters, ATMs, asset sales centres, internet banking channels, call centres and mobile banking. We are focussed on providing each customer with their choice of channel for transactions and products to meet their financial needs and quality service.
In wholesale banking, we are creating an integrated franchise by re-organising its existing coverage groups. Broadly these would be under four verticals – large corporates, mid-corporates, focussed segmental coverage and commercial banking focussing on higher rated lending book, increasing the share of working capital loans and reducing the concentration risk.
In SME, as a mark of our commitment to support SME segment, we have been organising capability development roadshows (Evolve) across various cities for the last few years. Evolve is a platform for SMEs to learn and interact with leaders who have driven the wheels of innovation in their companies across multiple industries. We also felicitate successful SMEs through India SME 100 Awards. This is our way to encourage innovation and sustainable growth in the segment.
We have strengthened the risk framework basis our learnings and experience over the years by focussing on:
Choice of business: Originated retail loans from existing deposit customers.
Core lines of defence: In credit models, we used proprietary risk models. Credit policy focussed on low Loan to Value (LTV) and steady Fixed Obligation to Income Ratio (FOIR) norms. In monitoring, we automated early warning systems and behaviour scorecards.
Final line of defence: Strengthened collections through analytically optimised queuing strategy and channel selection.
On the wholesale side of our business, we have been focusing on portfolio diversification, reduction in concentration to select sectors and project loans and have further increased our focus on transaction banking and working capital business.
We have put in place a Risk Appetite Statement, which covers financial (solvency, liquidity, earnings stability, concentration), as well as non-financial (operations, technology, compliance, reputation) aspects of risk.
This statement is set at the Bank level by the Risk Management Committee of the Board and is cascaded to the operational units and incorporated in the decision-making with limits and policies.
Axis Bank has built a robust banking franchise over the years. We have achieved consistent growth and with a five year CAGR (2013-14 to 2018-19) of 16% in total assets, 14% in total deposits, 17% in total advances. Our balance sheet size has grown to `800,997 crores as on 31 March, 2019.
During 2018-19, we reported strong deposit growth every quarter and bulk of our deposits continue to come from granular, retail sources. Our loans portfolio is also seeing steady growth every quarter driven by retail segment. Retail loans form the largest part of the Bank’s loan book and are well diversified. Our identified ‘new engines of growth’ (personal loan, education loan and small business banking) continue to grow strongly. We continue to increase our branch network, with improving productivity per branch.
During 2018-19, Gross and Net, Non- Performing Assets (NPA) ratios continued to moderate and restructured assets are now negligible as a proportion of the loan book. Our provision coverage ratio on NPAs stood at 77% as on 31 March, 2019.
We remain a leading player (4th largest) in Wealth Management. We have a strong market position across most digital payment products.