Founded in 2001, under Mr. Chandra Shekhar Ghosh, a senior Ashoka Fellow, BFSL is involved in giving loans to small borrowers who have no access to formal banking services. In past 15 years, BFSL has earned credibility and many accolades for financing small entrepreneurs and around 6.7 million women borrowers. The organization had a network of 2,022 branches spread across 22 Indian states and Union territories, serviced by over 15,000 employees. As on 31 March 2015, BFSL had a loan book of around ₹ 9,524 crore and an impressive repayment rate of over 99%.
After almost two decades, Bandhan Bank Ltd. is an Indian banking and financial services company headquartered in Kolkata, West Bengal. Bandhan, which started as a micro-finance company in 2001, received banking licence by Reserve Bank of India in 2014. On 23 August 2015, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley officially inaugurated the bank in Kolkata. Initially it opened with 501 branches, 50 ATMs and 2,022 Door step Service Centres (DSCs) across India. Bandhan Bank was incorporated on 23 December 2014 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Bandhan Financial Holdings. Bandhan received the in-principle approval of the (RBI) for setting up a universal bank in April 2014; the banking regulator gave its final nod in June 2015. Kolkata-headquartered Bandhan is the first bank to be set up in eastern part of India after Independence. Presently, Bandhan Bank has 3,565 touch points pan India consisting of 840 bank branches, 2,443 Doorstep Service Centres (DSCs) and 282 ATMs, serving more than 10.5 million customers. Bandhan Financial Holdings is owned by Bandhan Financial Services Limited (BFSL), the largest micro finance organization in India. Its public shareholders include International Finance Corporation (IFC), Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), Caladium Investment Pvt. Ltd. (a company managed by GIC Special Investments Private Limited), Bandhan Employees Welfare Trust, and a few individuals.