The merger process of 10 public sector banks is expected to be completed by March 31, 2020.
“March 31 could be the timeline for all the approvals. Technically it is possible to roll out on April 1,” said R.A. Sankara Narayanan, MD & CEO, Canara Bank, which will be merged with Syndicate Bank.
Mr. Narayanan is the only CEO who would have executed two public sector bank mergers in one year. Earlier, he was the MD and CEO of Vijaya Bank.
The Bank of Baroda-Dena Bank-Vijaya Bank merger, which was announced on September 17, 2018, was completed by March 31, 2019.
On the current merger, Mr. Narayanan said the integration of human resources (HR) and information technology (IT) were the key issues for a successful merger.
“HR integration without retrenchment…without losing any quality or motivation is the first thing,” he said.
Canara Bank has an employee strength of 58,350, while Syndicate Bank has 31,535.
“Another thing is IT. It must be well planned and executed. If that happens, then the process is through. These are the two major issues — HR and IT,” Mr. Narayanan said.
He also added there would not be any branch closure in the near future though Canara and Syndicate had a strong presence in south India.
“Not immediately [branch rationalisation]. Even in the previous merger, there was no closure of branches or loss of opportunity. Even if two branches are doing well in one street or in a building, why should we close them? Our aim is to improve on overall parameters,” he added.