ICICI Bank is looking to double its active mobile banking users to one crore in the next nine months, a move that will help the country's largest private sector lender lower cost of rendering services.
It is also aiming to grow the transaction value through the mobile banking channel by up to 500 per cent over last year's Rs 16,000 crore.
"We have 50 lakh active users at present and the same will go up to one crore by the year end," its executive director Rajiv Sabharwal told reporters today in a conference call. Through the aggressive play, Sabharwal said the bank is hoping to increase or atleast maintain its market share in the mobile banking segment, which stood at 25 per cent last year.
Sabharwal said the cost of transactions through the digital channels that includes mobile and Internet banking, is one-tenth of that of physical presence, as the bank can serve a large number of customers through the initial investment in technologies.
He said the growth in mobile banking, which includes applications for both account holders and non-account holders, is outpacing Internet at present.
The bank is adding five lakh digital banking customers per month at present, and mobile accounts for three lakh of those.
However, going by value, mobile accounts for only a third of Internet banking, he said, adding that the focus of the bank's mobile banking is on retail transactions.
At present, the average ticket size for a mobile phone transaction is Rs 5,000, Sabharwal said. The bank today doubled the number of services rendered through the mobile banking application to 110, taking it ahead of rival HDFC Bank's 80 transactions, and also announced that by the end of the fiscal, customers will be able to do 200 types of transactions over their mobile phones.
Stating that the growth in mobile is far exceeding its own expectations, Sabharwal attributed it to smartphones becoming cheaper and the ability to quickly adopt newer technologies among Indians.
Sabharwal claimed that the bank has become the first globally to integrate with Google Now, through which customers will receive various alerts like insurance premiums being due on their mobile phones.
Among other services which get added to its mobile banking include direct calls/chatting with bank executives and also cardless cash withdrawal.
It can be noted that many lenders, especially the large ones like SBI, HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank, are investing on the digital front and there have been a slew of announcements including product launches and tie-ups with other players in the eco-system in the recent past.