It’s official, SBI gets its first woman chief

Arundhati Bhattacharya has been appointed SBI’s chairperson for a three-year term following the approval of the appointments committee of the cabinet (ACC) headed by the prime minister

GN Bureau | October 7, 2013



The country’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) got its first woman chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya who assumed charge on Monday. Bhattacharya took over the post from Pratip Chaudhuri after he retired on September 30.

The government announced the appointment of 57-year-old Bhattacharya following the approval of the appointments committee of the cabinet (ACC) headed by prime minister Manmohan Singh. Bhattacharya, who was the youngest managing director and also the chief financial officer (CFO) of the bank, will serve as the chairman for a three-year period, according to a statement released by SBI.

The statement further said that during her 36-year log career, Bhattacharya has served across various areas like retail, treasury and corporate finance at numerous posts including deputy managing director and corporate development officer, chief general manager of the Bangalore circle and new businesses and also headed SBI Caps.

Bhattacharya’s appointment comes at a crucial juncture when the bank’s asset quality has been experiencing a consistent decline, poor loan recovery, sluggish credit demand and falling profit figures. In addition, the bank has also entered into a battle with its officers’ federation which has been posing difficulties for the bank especially in the last one year.

Currently, over one-fifth of the nation’s banking assets are under the control of SBI and its five subsidiaries. With over 15,000 branches and a plan to merge with all its subsidiaries, SBI is eyeing to become a globally competitive bank.

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