SHILLONG, March 25 � Women are better money managers, be it the housewives who saves money concealed in a rice can, masala jar, or others who run successful businesses and Self Help Groups, said Usha Anathasubramaniam, Chairman and Managing Director of Bharatiya Mahila Bank (BMB).
Anathasubramaniam, who was here to open the 21st BMB branch in the country, said, women has this innate quality to save and manage money better than men. �Women, despite hardship, manage to save some money, be it concealed inside a rice can or a masala jar and they do so for the rainy days of the family,� she said.
The Managing Director said that some of these women, however, need some formal education on the banking sector and its various products so that their innate strength to save and manage can be value-added.
BMB is a Government of India initiative and was inaugurated on November 19, 2013 under the Companies Act 1956. The Shillong branch is the 21st in the country and the bank has a target of opening another 34 branches during this fiscal at an investment of Rs 1000 crore. All eight members of the Board of Directors of BMB are women.
The initiative is largely modelled on the Bangladesh Grameen Bank which has successfully been able to mobilise and empower women in that country economically, through small savings and also furthering objectives of SHGs.
�Forty nine per cent of the population in India are women and we want to leverage upon the strength of this huge population and empower them economically,� Anathasubramaniam said.
Stating that BMB is �different� from other banks, she said it would concentrate predominantly on providing loans to women with the least collateral. Moreover, there are many other products specifically targeted towards women, although men are free to open accounts in the bank.
Anathasubramaniam said that the bank would financially encourage women taking up small and medium enterprises such as opening day-care centre for children, catering and small shops. The MD informed that similar ventures in several cities of the country run by women are already a success.