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Last Updated : Jun 15, 2016 09:41 PM IST | Source: CNBC-TV18

Merger to reduce duplication, to be complete by March 2017: SBI

The bank will now start working on a merger process which will be completed by March 2017, says VG Kannan, Managing Director & Group Executive, SBI.

The Cabinet has approved the merger of five associate banks with State Bank of India and ratios of the merger will be decided post valuations in two months, said VG Kannan, Managing Director & Group Executive, SBI. The bank will now start working on a merger process which will be completed by March 2017, he added.

Post merger, treasury gains will be a boost, quality of investment will get better and cost of deposits will come down for the entity. In addition, the merger will reduce account duplication for all the banks, he added.

Backing Kannan, N Krishnamachari, MD, State Bank of Mysore, said he is positive on moving into the SBI fold as branch overlaps will significantly be reduced by the act.

Calling this a 'win-win’ situation, CR Sasikumar, MD, State Bank of Travancore said stake holders are happy about moving into SBI.

Below is the transcript of VG Kannan, N Krishnamachari and CR Sasikumar with CNBC-TV18's Latha Venkatesh

Latha: Now that your shareholder has approved, the cabinet approval has come are we looking at a much shorter time frame. I mean we got this breathlessly your boards met in record time and even the shareholders approval has come very quickly, how quickly can we expect the merger?

Kannan: I told you the outermost was always March and now that big reserves- 00:32-- have come in will start working in double speed and may be try to do it at the earliest. I don’t want to give any timelines because legal areas will have to find out and what are the documentation. However, I think the process may be very long. At the most March and may be even earlier.

Latha: So, either it is FY17 or it is Calendar 2016 is your guess?

Kannan: You already interpreted it for me.

Latha: By when will one know the merger ratios?

Kannan: That is the process which have to be followed. We need to go for the valuations. Valuation will be done by the valuers for all the four banks. On that basis the ratios will be decide but I would say not less than two months we should get the valuation. We expect, analyst there are some complication but our previous experience say that two months should be quite adequate.

Latha: Have you all already started any process of taking joint decisions? I am sure your plans about personnel allocation reallocation are already on the drawing board?

Kannan: We have had some preliminary discussion, we have not really started in but I think going forward the next financial year had some discussion as to how do we do the manpower management.

Q: What do you perceive as advantages of the merger?

Krishnamachari: I think the advantages have already been spelt out by the chairman for quite some time now. We see quite a lot of advantages in terms of cost benefits which the bank will get with so many duplications which is happening across these five associations, State Bank of India, all becoming into one set. And all the people who will be relieved in different banks, can be utilised with their skills available to us in the areas where we need to develop business whether it is in advances or whether it is in treasury. That is the major benefit. And apart from that, of course, the skills which are available from other banks will also permit us to take care of the damage which are happening across the bank. And we required people with skills and many specialised areas. So, that is a major plus for us.

Q: State Bank of Mysore is the babiest of the babies if you go by the size of the balance sheet. How does it feel being on the periphery? Mr Kannan speaks from the core, you speak from the periphery. Are there fears of personnel integration not going in favour of the employees of the subsidiary?

Krishnamachari: My personal assessment in the last 10 days that I have been here, I am moving around and meeting people, I see it quite positively from various people, various stake holders, they seem to be quite happy about moving into the SBI fold. And issues which are there, we will take up with them, which are differences between SBI and SBM and the crack things have been formed that SBI as well as the associate bank, we will examine all of them to see where we can smoothen out issues which are different between SBI, SBM and other associate banks.

Latha: Since the cabinet has given the nod how does the merger look at your end? You expect any personnel related problems at your end?

Sasikumar: Not really, I expect the process to be pretty smooth because it is basically advantage to the customer. The large number of customers that State Bank of Travancore (SBT) have moving to the larger State Bank of Indi (SBI) family will be of great benefit to the customers. So they have only win-win for the customer.

Latha: Integrating the cadre will that take away a lot of your time? There could be angst about people not getting the kind of promotions they anticipated because now it is a much larger work force. Integration of the SBT cadre with the SBI cadre does that usually involve a problem?

Sasikumar: Not really because as of now we operate more or less on the same technology platform. We use the same apex training centre. My people are sent aboard to SBI’s foreign branches for their assignment. So, there is a substantial amount of integration already in place. I don’t foresee any issues regarding integration of the staff. The culture is basically the same whether it is SBI or SBT the culture is same.
First Published on Jun 15, 2016 02:43 pm
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