India's best bank for SMEs 2017: ICICI Bank
No other private-sector bank in India lends more to micro or small and medium-sized enterprises. ICICI Bank has been a champion of SME lending since its formation in 1994, and it remains a consistent financial supporter of thriving young firms, which manufacture 40% of India’ exports and provide employment to 80 million people in south Asia’s largest economy.
In recent years, ICICI has rolled out a host of new digital banking services aimed at extending better and more cost-effective corporate banking services to leading Indian SMEs.
Last year, it joined forces with Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, launching the Trade Facilitation Center, a programme designed to make it easier to extend a host of corporate banking services to onshore SMEs, from trade finance – a vital development in a country where small firms have long struggled to secure access to working credit – and cash management solutions, to foreign exchange, bank guarantees, and cross-border remittances.
In March 2017, the Mumbai-based lender announced it was working with IndiaMart, an Indian e-commerce firm based in New Delhi, with the aim of providing escrow services to more than 50 million smaller enterprises.