The State Bank of India completed 200 years on 2 June 2005. Originally
set up as the Bank of Calcutta on 2 June 1806 it was renamed Bank of Bengal
three years later. Thereafter, it was redesigned as the first joint-stock
bank of British India, sponsored by the Government of Bengal and named Bank
banks, Bank of Bengal, the Bank of Bombay and Bank of Madras (the latter two
came into being 40 years later) held the reigns of Indian banking for over
50 years and were finally amalgamated in 1921 as the Imperial Bank of India.
when the Reserve Bank of India was established as the apex bank in 1935 the
Imperial Bank's role was slightly diluted and it was converted into a purely
commercial bank, which was permitted to undertake foreign exchange business
for the first time ever.
1947, the Imperial Bank had a capital base of Rs 11.85 crore, deposits and
advances of Rs 275.14 crore and Rs 72.94 crore respectively. It had a network
of 172 branches and more than 200 sub-offices extending all over the country.
Imperial Bank of India was transformed into the State Bank of India under
an Act of Parliament on 1 July 1955. It had 480 branches, sub-offices, three
local head offices inherited from the Imperial Bank, and more than a quarter
of the resources of the Indian banking system under its control.
1959, State Bank took over eight former state-associated banks as its subsidiaries.
With that the concept of banking as repositories of community savings, and
lenders to credit-worthy parties gave way to commercial banking.
first major reorganisation of the SBI took place in the 1970s. The merchant
banking division, the precursor to the SBI Caps was established in 1972. SBI
Capital Markets and SBI Mutual Fund were set up in 1986 and 1987 respectively
as SBI's subsidiaries. SBI's first ATM was set up in the 1990s as well as
a cards division in collaboration with GE Capital. It also entered the field
of Bancassurance with a global partner Cardif SA, a subsidiary of BNP Paribas.
this, the SBI promoted the Clearing Corporation of India Ltd, was the co-sponsor
of ARCIL. SBI DFHI, is the largest primary dealer in India. SBI Funds Management
is a joint venture with Societe Generale Asset Management.
the country's No 1 bank, the banking sector looks at the SBI for leads in
setting interest rates and other moves. Markets perceive the SBI as the merchant-banking
arm of the government as it has raised a few billion dollars in recent times
for the government. SBI also sells and buys dollars in the market at the behest
of the RBI. In recent times, the central bank has been operating through other
government banks also.
with over 13,650 branches and 5,217 ATMs, State Bank of India is the largest
bank in the country with an asset base of $126 billion and profits in excess
of $1 billion. It services more than 90 million customers through a network
of about 9000 branches and has a 25 per cent market share along with its subsidiaries.
went global in 1867 when the Colombo branch of the bank was set up under the
aegis of Bank of Madras. SBI at present is represented in the SAARC countries
and has branches in Dhaka, and in Male, besides joint venture banks in Nepal
and Bhutan. It is also well represented in West Asia, Europe and North America.
In the east, it has presence in Singapore, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tokyo, Osaka,
Manila and Sydney.
according to international norms, the SBI is way behind other world-class
players. SBI's achievements are pale compared to banks like Citigroup, which
has 200 million customers in over 100 countries, or the 150 year old HSBC,
which is present in 77 countries and is cited the fifth largest company in
the world. Also the
SBI is likely to find the going tough in the near future when it has to adopt
Basel-II norms, which could put pressure on its finances.
said and done the since the RBI holds majority equity in SBI it is basically
the government that holds the key to its future.