How Rana Kapoor’s leadership paved the way for sustainable investment banking at Yes Bank

Sustainability in operations has been a key enabler for years. It not only saves cost and time, but generates fruitful avenues for businesses to prosper with time. This stature was ardently brought to light by Rana Kapoor, the former CEO and Founder of Yes Bank, who increasingly focused on Sustainable Investment Banking. The founder made conscious efforts at promoting sunrise sectors with private equity investors taking over pivotal roles in the sustainability environment. 

Under Rana Kapoor, Yes Bank’s knowledge verticals expanded to multiple fields, and directly touched the overall economic growth. Sustainable Investment Banking for that matter is the primary investment advisory for sustainable ventures that have garnered expertise in the areas of alternate energy and environmental advisory, and social enterprises and rural advisory.

All units set up by the former banker are delegated with the tasks to promote and support initiatives on renewable energy, clean technology and socially sustainable sectors namely healthcare, education, livelihood creation, water and sanitation. Besides, the Sustainable Investment Banking is also tasked with acting as the exclusive country advisor for the Global Environment Fund (GEF) in USA, which is one of the largest and oldest private equity firms focused on investing in the environmental space. 

“As one of India’s youngest banks, Yes Bank has since inception integrated Responsible Banking as one of its key differentiators. Our Responsible Banking ethos has seen considerable traction in the past few years, and Yes Bank is aiming to take a leadership position in mainstreaming sustainability in India. The bank has an active debt and advisory portfolio in India’s sunrise sectors such as food and agribusiness, infrastructure and logistics and healthcare,” stated Kapoor as he noted how Sustainable Investment Banking has been implemented at the bank.

The vitality of sunrise sectors to India cannot be overlooked since they require utmost attention for an economy to grow. Therefore, India being a preferable market for investment, is impacted by its economic, political, and regulatory framework. 

This means that the growth of these sectors is reliant on the inward amount of foreign direct investments. The opportunity, as Kapoor noted, is encouraging because more equity is now being channelised towards promotion of such sectors. Furthermore, when an investment is driven towards clean energy, it tends to draw more interest from global economies. 

Notably, Yes Bank also works with a vision to ensure sustainability in approach and operations. Its module, thus, oversees effective financial inclusion, which supervises advanced participation of unbanked and under-banked Indians in the economy, leading to both inclusive growth and significant social justice. 

This in turn takes care of innovative product and services for both rural and urban areas, giving rise to new partnerships; courtesy Yes Bank’s specialized business unit – Inclusive and Social Banking, under which it has adopted Frugal Innovations for Financial Inclusion (FI4FI). The Inclusive and Social Banking deal with solutions for micro-credit, micro saving and micro insurance, and remittance services across various geographies in India.

Under this initiative, the Yes bank has developed a framework that successfully eliminates poverty and improves livelihood. Rana Kapoor stated that when the concept of fair practice is brought forward, it is done to make sure that price, transparency and services, all are justly incorporated across different segments. For instance, under Yes Sampan, Inclusive and Social Banking has taken care of multiple business models in rural, semi-urban, and urban areas, which are holistically guided by FI4FI principle. He added that when a certain guideline is followed, it helps in maintaining hierarchy and generates employment at large. This also leads to local communities being trained in a way that is more effective than earlier.

“Through its ‘Frugal Innovation 4 Financial Inclusion’ (FI4FI) philosophy, the Bank has created award winning product innovations that target the Bottom of the Pyramid (BoP) in rural and urban India, thus, making a positive socio-economic impact,” stated Kapoor as he noted sustainability in operations.

Solution driven by Yes bank under Rana Kapoor towards sustainable investment banking have been the intensive moderators to the industry standards. The scheme has brought forward numerous ways to help the sunrise sectors by increasing the equity investments and driving in more FDI. Besides, by developing the standards for fair and transparent operations, it has also tried to alleviate poverty from rural to urban areas. Interestingly, all this has happened while staying sustainable and calculated in approach, using industry specific advisors.

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