Business Times

Sampath aims to reach the top in credit cards

By Duruthu Edirimuni Chandrasekera

Having reached the fourth position in credit card business in just six months, Sampath Bank is aggressively targeting the top-notch position in this sector in the next three years, according to officials.
“By 2013, we want to be the number one in the credit card business. Currently we are at the fourth place and we want to reposition Sampath at the third place,” Aravinda Perera, Executive Director/Chief Operating Officer told the Business Times on the sidelines of an investor forum organized by the bank last week.

Six months ago, the bank was at the sixth place in this business, and now made it to the fourth place, Mr. Perera noted, saying that this was mainly due to the innovative credit card products which were introduced by Sampath.

Ranjith Samaranayake, Group Chief Financial Officer, said this year Sampath’s card centre will earn more than Rs 100 million. “It was possible for us to come into this position as we have only four charges for our cards, whereas the other players charge about 28 charges in all (per credit card),” he said.
He said Sampath will also be launching 40 branches within the next two years in a bid to reach the volumes of the other two largest commercial banks (HNB and Commercial Bank).

Mr. Samaranayake said that Sampath will launch new deposit products in a race to reach the top in deposit growth as well. “We’ll be introducing new deposit products by next week,” he said. The pre-tax profit of the bank for the first half of this year crossed the Rs. 1.8 billion mark, registering a growth of 19.3% more than the Rs 1.5 billion during the same period last year. Sampath’s profit for this period saw a 60.8% growth to Rs 1.3 billion against the Rs 849.3 million in the same period in 2009.

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