Banks bolster ATM network after moderate expansion over past 2 years
Bombay, August 29
Banks are beefing up their network of automated teller machines (automated banking machines) after muted expansion over the past two years of the pandemic.
This can be gauged by the fact that they added 2,796 ATMs in the first four months of FY23, compared to 1,486 in FY22 and 2,815 in FY21.
By the end of July 2022, banks had a network of 2,17,857 ATMs, according to RBI data. In addition to bank ATMs, white-label ATM operators had a network of 33,000 ATMs at the end of June.
Industry experts say there is a need to further expand the ATM network to meet the cash withdrawal needs of beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (there were 46.30 lakh with outstanding balances of 172,848 crore ₹ as of August 17, 2022) and those receiving Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) under various government schemes.
“This year looks quite promising…During the Covid-19 pandemic, there has not been much deployment of ATMs due to physical restrictions. But now we are seeing a lot of activity in terms of ATM installations,” Ravi B Goyal, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, AGS Transact Technologies Ltd.
He pointed out that public and private sector banks have issued tenders (tenders) at regular intervals for the supply of ATMs.
“And we see that there would be at least the deployment of around 50,000 ATMs and CRMs (cash recycling machines) together this financial year, going through the tenders already launched and those in progress,” said said Goyal, adding that fiscal year 23 could see the highest. never added ATMs in a year.
The fact that the State Bank of India (SBI) alone plans to acquire 6,750 ATMs is likely an indicator of the banking system’s network expansion plans.
India’s largest bank has launched a tender for the purchase of 6,750 ATMs with installation support services across the country. The Bank said it may increase the supply size to 8,100 at its sole discretion.
Goyal observed that when banks open new branches, they need at least one on-site ATM and two to three off-site ATMs to take care of their customers.
August 29, 2022