UCO Bank posts Rs.558 crore net profit


Kolkata: City-based public sector bank UCO Bank posted a net profit of Rs.558 crore for the fiscal 2008-09 compared to Rs.412 crore last fiscal, a growth of 35.44 percent, a top bank official said Friday.

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“The domestic operation contributed Rs.466 crore to the net profit and rest came from overseas operations,” S.K. Goel, chairman and managing director of UCO Bank said at a press conference.

The fourth quarter (January-March) of 2008-09 generated a 19.26 percent growth in net profit over corresponding quarter last fiscal. The net profit for the quarter stood at Rs.103 crore compared to Rs.86 crore the year before.

There was a growth of 25.42 percent in deposits and 25.24 percent in advances in 2008-09.

“In the current fiscal we are targeting deposits and advances growth of 20 percent each,” he said.

Talking about fund raising, Goel said as the market condition is improving the bank may go for follow on public offer of Rs.135 crore in face value terms this fiscal.

“We are not going for tier II capital raising as of now, though we have enough headroom of around Rs.500 crore,” Goel said.

He said the bank may also go for a Benchmark Prime Lending Rate (BPLR) cut of at least 50 basis point soon adding that then simultaneous cut will happen in deposit rates also.

At present, the BPLR of the bank is at 12.5 percent.

Asked about the bank’s plans to increase its branches, Goel said: “We have submitted a proposal to the RBI (Reserve Bank of India – the apex bank in India) for opening 120 more branches in FY10.”

The bank is planning to open an overseas business unit in Dubai.

“It will be a joint venture project, where the infrastructure will be provided by the partner company and the technical expertise will be ours,” Goel said, though he refused to divulge the name of the partner.

“The business income will be shared on 50:50 basis,” he added.

UCO Bank already has two branches each in Hong Kong and Singapore and representative offices in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia and Guangzhou in China.