CARDS & PAYMENTS | Tony Chua, India

HDFC Bank plans offering more credit cards to non-account holders

Rising demand for recently released Infinia card prompted the lender to come out with variants.

In a shift from its traditional practice of offering credit cards to its captive clients, HDFC Bank, India’s second-largest private sector lender, is now offering more cards to people outside its existing client base.

Currently, customers outside the bank’s existing client base account for 25 per cent of its card base, compared with 10 per cent a year ago.

According to Pralay Mondal, country head (retail assets and credit cards), the move is in line with the bank’s strategy to enter the high-end cards segment. “As we go to super-premium clients, we would look more for external customers. We have already made a shift. While the ratio earlier stood at 90:10, about 25 per cent of our business (in credit cards) now comes from our external clients,” Mondal said during an interaction with Business Standard. With a book value of close to Rs 6,000 crore ($1.35 billion), HDFC Bank accounts for nearly 30 per cent in the credit card business in India, with the number of cards at 5.5-6 million. “We are issuing close to 85,000 to 90,000 cards a month, and with some new launches, we expect the monthly issuance to cross 100,000 cards soon,” Mondal said.

Speaking about the Infinia high-end credit cards, which the bank launched last month, Mondal said the response has, so far, been good and the bank now plans to introduce a few cards a couple of notches below Infinia to cater to the demand. “We have a cap of 5,000 cards for Infinia, but the demand is for a lot more. That is why we want to come out with variants just below Infinia quickly,” he said.

View the full story in Business Standard.

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