The State Bank of India (SBI) has recorded a perceptible increase in the number of transactions happening at its multiple digital channels, from 60% in the pre-pandemic period to 67% currently. Dinesh Khara, the chairman, attributed this rise to pick-up in e-commerce during the pandemic-induced lockdown, which restricted movement.
“When e-commerce picked up, it was actually the digital channels we are offering that got wider currency and acceptability. That is one of the reasons our digital transactions have gone as high as 67%,” Khara told PTI in an interview. “I think it is a phenomenal number, considering the fact that we are a bank which is serving all kinds of customers – digitally savvy and not digitally savvy.”
He pointed out that the ecosystem such as round the clock availability of Real Time Gross Settlement System (RTGS) and National Electronic Fund Transfer (NEFT), which got created recently, also helped the bank in scaling up its digital transactions. “I think part of it, higher digital transactions, is coming from the ecosystem and a part of it has come from the bank’s own effort.”
SBI’s digital lending platform – Yono (You Only Need One App), has achieved significant growth during the current financial year. There are 35 million registered users of Yono, and the bank is opening over 35,000 to 40,000 savings accounts per day with the help of the mobile app.
Khara said around Rs 16,000 crore worth of pre-approved personal loans (PAPL), during the current financial year, have been disbursed to 12.82 lakh customers through Yono. “While 59,000 crore car loans aggregating to around Rs 4,000 crore were sanctioned, the bank could generate 15,000 home loan lends worth Rs 4,000 crore with the help of Yono,” he said.
The platform also helps in distributing products of the bank’s subsidiaries, including SBI Life Insurance, SBI General Insurance and SBI Card and SBI Mutual Fund. “As more and more users are coming and using Yono, we are only ensuring that it becomes all the more robust so that it is in a position to handle and generate more volumes and create value for the bank, while also improving the experience of our customers,” Khara explained.
Moreover, the bank’s topmost priority is to provide safety to customers using its digital channels, and has significantly scaled up capabilities to deal with any kind of cyber frauds. “We have ensured that the firewalls are strong enough and there should be adequate protection both at the end point as well as the server level.” Furthermore, the bank continuously keeps reviewing protection levels to ensure that all channels and networks stay protected.