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Last Updated : Aug 31, 2016 09:35 PM IST | Source: CNBC-TV18

If India grows at 10%, HDFC Bank will grow at 30%: MD Puri

Country's second-largest private sector lender HDFC Bank may have grown leaps and bounds over the past decade or so but now is the "best time" for the bank, says MD Aditya Puri.


Country's second-largest private sector lender HDFC Bank may have grown leaps and bounds over the past decade or so but now is the "best time" for the bank, says MD Aditya Puri.

In an interview with CNBC-TV18, Puri said the bank's fortress balance sheet, adequate capital adequacy (16 percent), healthy margins and powerful brand value to help it grow comfortably in the future.

He added that he was confident that the bank can reclaim the 30 growth rate it had seen at its peak if economic activity picks up.

"If India grows at 10 percent level, HDFC Bank too can go back to 30 percent growth levels," he told CNBC-TV18 from the sidelines of India Business Leaders Award.

Below is the verbatim transcript of Aditya Puri’s interview to Latha Venkatesh on CNBC-TV18.

Q: Do you see this to be a better time than previously?

A: We don’t give guidance but let me put it differently do I see this to be a better time than previously yes. Let me tell you why? At this point of time if you are heard Millward Brown said we are the best brand in India not in financial services, the best brand.

Our balance sheet is not under strain; our margins are intact as you said. Our funding is fine; our capital adequacy is at 16 percent. We have spent all our money on distribution. 50 percent of our distribution is in semi urban and rural India where 60 percent of India leaves.

We are one among the global leaders in digital banking. So, when you take all of this in to account and you see that the country is growing somewhere between 7.50 and 8 that is a great opportunity because we have straddled the balance sheet and we are well positioned in the market.

Q: I have covered you as a cub reporter. You were a 30 percent growth bank and then you have now come towards the 20 percent mark. Sometime back you told me that is because it is wise not to lend too much when the economy is slowing down. Is that period over and now do we see you doing a slightly incrementally higher growth than you did the previous year and then even more the next year?

A: Like we say we don’t guide.

Q: I am asking you a broad direction have you troughed out and are you rising?

A: Just to cover you when we were doing 30 percent India was also doing 10 percent. The day they do 10 percent I will do more than 30 percent. However, our trajectory like the country is rising. We have got distribution; remember this is not easy field. We have got distribution and products and 60 percent of India where it is not there.

We have the customer base for digital. Let me try and explain it like this. People can buy the apps etc but if you try and make chicken curry without chicken which is the customers, you make chicken curry without the chicken it isn’t going to work. So, we are market leaders in everything on a real time basis. We have used digital to convert that same leadership in terms of turnaround time, in terms of convenience into the online world.

Q: So back to 25 percent in couple of years?

A: Definitely, why not but the gross domestic product (GDP) also has to grow more than 8 percent.

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First Published on Aug 31, 2016 08:36 am
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