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January 25, 2000
Federal Bank plunges into Internet banking
George Iype in Kochi
The Federal Bank, India's largest private sector bank, has tied up with Infosys Technologies to provide over 2,50,000 non-resident Indian clients with Internet banking and e-commerce facilities.
Infosys is to provide Federal Band with the Net banking platform and e-commerce products by April. An agreement to this effect was signed by Federal Bank chairman K P Padmakumar and Infosys Chief Executive Officer N R Narayana Murthy.
According to the Federal Bank-Infosys agreement, BankAway, the e-com platform developed by the Infosys for net-banking initiatives will be used in all Federal Bank branches to provide integrated financial services in both retail and corporate customers.
BankAway enables banks to provide one-click access to their bank accounts, trade finance, cash management, bill payment, investment and on-line shopping, among other things.
"Our e-initiative is another step to provide customers world class products leveraging into the best of technology from Infosys," Padmakumar told rediff.com.
He said the Internet would be a strategic tool for Federal Bank to provide value-added services to its customers, especially those outside India. NRI account holders contribute 45 per cent of Federal Bank's total deposits.
Padmakumar disclosed that the bank has set apart Rs 0.32 billion for its Net initiative.
"We have adopted information technology as a strategic tool for achieving competitive edge and therefore we have started implementing an ambitious three-year IT strategic plan," he said.
The Federal Bank has been a forerunner in technology among the traditional private banks in the country and uses its own automation software, FedSoft, in 130 branches.
It has helped the bank offer innovative products and delivery systems such as any-branch banking, tele-banking and customer site terminals.
Federal Bank's gross profit zoomed by 205 per cent to Rs 0.76 billion as against Rs 0.25 billion in the third quarter of the financial year ending December 31, 1999. The bank clocked a 50 per cent jump in its net profit to Rs 0.15 billion in the same period.
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