HDFC Bank is gearing to hire 500 relationship managers as part of its plan to expand coverage to 575 districts. With this hiring, the strength of the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) vertical of the Bank will go up to 2,500. The Bank has a total workforce strength of about 1.23 lakh.
The MSME portfolio of HDFC covers chemicals, consumer goods, hotels, auto parts, textiles, pharma, fabrication, agri-processing and similar sectors. It covers the selling chain in totality, right from wholesalers, retailers and distributors, to stockists and supermarkets. The districts where the Bank intends to expand have already been identified.
Over the past couple of years, the focus of the Bank on the MSME sector has been on the rise, especially after the pandemic. In addition, the Government has offered several measures to lend support to small businesses via the emergency credit line guarantee scheme (ECLGS). Under the Scheme, the Bank has been able to give 30 per cent more loans by the end of 2020, that is, about Rs 2,01,758 crore.
Not long ago, the Government directed that MSMEs re/de-classify themselves on the basis of their turnover and obtain an Udhyam registration certificate. Post reclassification, the Bank closed the MSME book at Rs 2,01,833 crore in March 2021 quarter, which was marginally higher than the Rs 2,01,758 crore it closed with in December 2020.