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Rule changes can help onboard customers from anywhere in India: Deutsche Bank

Under its diversity, equity and inclusion focus, the lender also has a defined approach to hiring LGBTQIA+ employees, which includes participating in job fairs and creating awareness through campus engagements.
Last Updated : 30 June 2024, 12:37 IST

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Mumbai: German lender Deutsche Bank will be focussing on the digital channel over the branch model to grow its business in the country, a top official said.

Changes in rules by the RBI mandating geographical location restrictions while onboarding customers will be of help, Kaushik Shaparia, chief executive of Deutsche Bank Group, India, told PTI.

"If the regulator were to permit digital access over and above the geographical restrictions, I am convinced we can do more.

"Currently, there are restrictions as to where you can onboard clients, where your locations are, and the customer has to have an office near one of your locations etc," he said on the sidelines of a bank event here.

When asked about the branch strategy in the country, Shaparia quipped that "geography is history", and added that the bank's aim will be to focus more on digital.

"Maybe in the past, having a robust branch strategy was critical but with digitisation, geography has become history. So, I think our approach would be more digital," he noted.

At present, the bank has 17 branches and one unit at GIFT IFSC in the country. It also relies on the Indian workforce in global capability centres (GCCs) to deliver a host of other innovations and work for its global operations, making India home to the largest number of employees outside of its headquarters in Germany, with over 20,000 professionals.

Shaparia said the GCCs in Mumbai, Jaipur, Pune and Bengaluru support the group's operations in 48 countries through business engineering, modelling, quantitative analytics, extensive structuring, and research to deliver innovative financial solutions.

It can be noted that many foreign lenders are relying on the digital channel to grow their India business, rather than expanding on branch presence. The regulator has also been pushing for such lenders to operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary rather than the branch model.

Meanwhile, as part of its social commitments under the corporate social responsibility mandate, the lender opened an evening learning centre exclusively for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people for helping the community progress on the formal educational front.

The centre in central Mumbai's Sion will be followed up with a similar facility in Ghatkopar, and there will be another learning centre in Pune for all the constituents of the society, Shaparia said.

Under its diversity, equity and inclusion focus, the lender also has a defined approach to hiring LGBTQIA+ employees, which includes participating in job fairs and creating awareness through campus engagements.

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Published 30 June 2024, 12:37 IST

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