HDFC Bank, the largest private sector lender in India, has reduced its ATM network by shutting down ATMs machines that were not frequently used by consumers.
The main reason behind this downsizing of its ATM network is the change in customers’ behavior from the use of cash to make electronic payments. Earlier, customers used debits cards mostly for withdrawing money; now the number of customers using debit cards for making various online and offline purchases has increased widely.
Commenting on this shift in customer’s approach to debit card, Paresh Sukthankar, the deputy MD of HDFC Bank, says that “In terms of teller transactions at branches as well as ATMs, we have seen a reduction or flattening out in those channels.”
Taking advantage of this change in customer behavior, HDFC Bank decided to shut down a few ATMs and planned to place them in other areas where there is a need for ATMs.
HDFC Bank had a distribution network of 12,260 ATMs and 4,715 branches in 2,657 centres as of March 31, 2017. But, at the end of Q1 of the fiscal year 2017, the bank managed to shut down 40 ATM machines. Currently, the banks has a distribution network of 4,727 branches and 12,220 ATMs.
Similarly, ICICI Bank has also witnessed its ATM network reduced by nearly 700 ATMs.