India’s Jana Small Finance Bank launches commercial operations
By Gopika Gopakumar
Jana Small Finance Bank on Wednesday announced the commercial launch of its banking operations, the last microfinance company to convert itself into a small finance bank (SFB), three years after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) gave its in-principle approval.
The Bengaluru-based small finance bank, which was earlier called Janalakshmi Financial Services and weathered huge losses on account of demonetization, said it is confident of turning profitable before the end of fiscal year 2019.
“Because of the delayed launch, the bank has lost many customers. I don’t see a challenge on how we will grow, even though we are last, because the market still is underbanked. We have 45 lakh MFI (microfinance institution) customers, 600 store fronts and 15,000 employees. Jana was the largest MFI. It should be able to churn quickly,” said Ajay Kanwal, managing director and chief executive officer, Jana Small Finance Bank.
Photo courtesy of Peter Haden.