8 July 2019: Private lender YES Bank has appointed Rajeev Uberoi senior group president (governance and control) and Anurag Adlakha senior group president and head of financial management and strategy.
These are the first major appointments after Ravneet Gill became managing director and chief executive officer in the fourth quarter of FY19. Uberoi and Adlakha will report to Gill. The bank has reiterated its financial position is sound and its liquidity and operating performance continue to be robust.The bank is being criticised for its stressed asset portfolio and exposure to struggling non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) and real estate.
YES Bank has a considerable exposure to the struggling Anil Ambani Group (ADAG). The bank posted a loss of Rs 1,507 crore in the March quarter on account of a fall in non-interest income and a sharp increase in provisioning for bad loans. It has sub-standard assets of around Rs 20,000 crore. Of those, some worth Rs 10,000 crore can turn non-performing. Gill has said so far there have been no slippages. However, the bank has made a 20 per cent contingency provision, amounting to Rs 2,100 crore, for the Rs 10,000 crore assets, which are on the watch list. The bank is looking to raise $1 billion.
Scotching speculation about high-level exits from its board, the bank in its statement said, “Over the past few weeks, there has been a lot of unfounded speculation about YES Bank’s board and management stability, asset portfolio, growth prospects, among other things. We strongly refute such speculation, which we suspect is a deliberate and malicious attempt to create instability in the institution by undermining investor and client confidence. We have apprised the authorities of these developments.” There have been a number of exits from its board in the past few months. Mukesh Sabharwal, who was non-executive independent director of the bank, and Ajai Kumar, non-executive director of the bank, were the latest exits from the board just before the annual general meeting. Both of them cited personal reasons for their leaving. Earlier, there were high-level exits including those of Pralay Mondal, R Chandrashekhar, and Vasant Gujarathi.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in May appointed former deputy governor R Gandhi to the board as additional director with a two-year term. It was speculated that the RBI’s move to appoint Gandhi was primarily because the regulator had apprehensions about the functioning of the bank. The board is supposed to meet on July 17 to consider and approve the audited financial results for Q1 FY20. The private lender’s share closed higher with its clarification. The shares closed at Rs 93.10, up 5.56 per cent, on the BSE.