The asset base of non-banking financial companies has scaled past Rs 54 lakh crore as of March 2022, constituting almost a quarter of the balance sheet of the commercial banking sector, Union Minister Bhagwat Krishanrao Karad said on Tuesday.
It can be noted that since the fall of the two major non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) -- IL&FS and Dewan Housing Finance Ltd (DHFL) -- the shadow banking industry was in a long crisis.
This crisis was more to do with their ability to mop up lendable funds as banks shunned them on one side and the RBI kept on tightening the regulatory noose around them, finally bringing them on par with banks when it comes to bad loan recognition since November 2021.
Addressing a CII-organised NBFC summit, the Union Minister of State for Finance said NBFCs have become the major growth driver of the economy by playing a vital role in providing credit to small and medium enterprises.
They have helped the MSME sector scale up its operations and create more jobs. They have helped create higher credit growth than the commercial banking sector --NBFCs loans grew over 10 per cent last fiscal while for banks, it was just half of that. The main reason for their success is that they have customised products and become an innovation machine of the financial landscape, Karad said.
He also credited digitisation and customer service for their success, which has seen their balance-sheet size more than double to 25 per cent of the balance sheet size of the banking sector as of March 2022 from just 12 per cent in fiscal 2010.
NBFCs are investing in digital technology like artificial intelligence and big data. It will also bridge the financial gap in the coming years due to its low cost of operations, the minister said, adding NBFCs have become a strong alternative to the banking sector.
CII's NBFC forum chairman Abhimanyu Munjal, who also heads Hero Fincorp, said NBFCs disbursed almost 60 per cent of their loans digitally in FY22 and have also achieved real-time customer onboarding.
He said around 11.3 million MSMEs have taken collateral-free loans worth Rs 2.32 lakh crore from NBFCs till June 2022. The credit demand in the NBFC sector is expected to grow to almost Rs 30 lakh crore in the next couple of years.