More than 3,300 agent outlets have already been set up to bring unbanked people under financial services
Bank Asia which started with corporate banking on November 27, 1999 is planning to shift its business focus to rural banking in the next five years.
As part of its five-year business plan, the bank will improve its retail and SME (Small and Medium Enterprise) portfolio to 50 percent from the existing 30 percent.
With 70 percent holdings, the corporate sector still dominates the bank's loan book. But it will be reduced to 50 percent in the next five years, according to the bank.
The number of large borrowers is small and most of the banks are running after them, said Md Arfan Ali, managing director of Bank Asia.
"We want to come out of this corporate banking strategy, by spreading financial services across the country through agent banking," Arfan said, adding that focus on retail and SME banking will bring sustainable growth to the bank.
The big shift to retail and SME banking is the part of the bank's vision to wipe out poverty from the country, he elaborated.
The bank has set a target of settling 50 percent of government transaction through it, Arfan said.
The bank has already set up more than 3,300 agent outlets across the country to bring unbanked people under financial services, he said.
Currently, Bank Asia has 128 branches across the country. In 2014, it started agent banking which contributed greatly to the financial inclusion of people by spreading financial services across the country.
Bank Asia's agents contribute 90 percent of the total loan disbursed through the agent banking channel.
The bank collected a total deposit of Tk1,200 crore through agent banking in which rural areas' contribution was 81 percent and the rate of women clients was 56 percent, according to the bank.
Bank Asia has agent banking service in 461 upazilas of 64 districts.
The bank introduced foreign payment service in 2014 through which 60 percent of outsourced remittance entered the country.
Bank Asia will celebrate its 20 years of commencement with blood donation, tree plantation, and financial aid to deprived people through a project named "Support for Survival", according to an announcement made on Sunday at a press conference at Hotel InterContinental Dhaka.