Bandhan Bank Ltd has named Ashok Lahiri as the chairman of its ten-member board and said the founder and CEO of its parent microfinance firm Bandhan, Chandra Shekhar Ghosh will also double up as managing director & CEO of the soon to launch bank.
The Kolkata-based bank is expected to commence its operations August 23 with President Pranab Mukherjee launching the newest bank of India in the city.
Bandhan which is one of the largest MFIs in the country was one of the two entities which got a nod for setting up a bank from RBI last year in April. The MFI had raised equity worth $260 million earlier this year from IFC, GIC and state-run Small Industries Development Bank of India to expand its net worth to Rs 2,700 crore, well above the RBI stipulation of minimum capital base of Rs 500 crore for new banks.
While the bank is set to launch its operations in Kolkata, as a MFI it spreads across 22 Indian states through a network of 2,022 branches, with a workforce of 17,500 employees. The bank had earlier announced that it will continue to serve its existing customers and plans to open around 500-600 branches across India with a special focus on the east and north-eastern parts of the country.
The board which had its first meeting in Kolkata at Bandhan Bank’s headquarters has been successful in roping in luminaries from government, banking and academia to its board. The board will comprise of 10 members with Ashok Lahiri chairing the board.
Ashok Lahiri is a renowned economist and former chief economic adviser to the government from January 1996 to January 1997. Besides serving as the executive director of Asian Development Bank he has also served as a director of National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, United Bank of India, IFCI, EXIM Bank and UCO Bank. He has also been a senior economist with the IMF and a consultant of the World Bank.
The bank also unveiled its logo on Thursday.