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HDFC Bank eyes 5 lakh new credit cards a month

Lender’s thrust follows RBI lifting ban

HDFC Bank has unveiled a road map to regain its market share in the credit card business in the next 9-12 months through aggressive customer acquisition backed by a robust technology backbone to support its operations.

The move comes several months after the RBI banned the private sector lender from issuing credit cards on concerns over repeated technological outages.

The lender aims to add five lakh cards to its portfolio every month from February next, solidifying its leadership position in them market, according to a top official.

It has also lined up more than 20 initiatives that will hit the market in the next 6 to 9 months to drive this growth. These include the introduction of co-branded cards with corporates

“The last few months have been spent in readying ourselves for the future. In the 9 months since our business was impacted, we got an opportunity to introspect and looked at what is happening in the market as well as what would come out in three years,” said Parag Rao, group head, payments, consumer finance, digital banking and IT.

“When the restrictions from the regulator were in place, we utilised the time to chalk out a new strategy. With our new offerings as well as our existing suite of cards, we are confident of meeting the needs of our customers and ‘come back with a bang,” he added.

He said the bank has already achieved the card issuance level seen in November 2020 and the momentum will grow henceforth from 300,000 new cards a month to 500,000 cards in six months.

Stating that the bank was the country’s largest credit-card issuer and had maintained leadership position over the past eight months, he said as per RBI data its credit cards spends were 1.5 times more than the nearest competitor.

He said HDFC Bank had 1.2 times more number of cards than the nearest competitor and as of June, the bank had 47.9% of the total market share.

It had about 3.67 crore debit cards, 1.48 crore credit cards and about 21.34 lakh acceptance points, making it among the largest facilitators of cashless payments in the country, the bank said.

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