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ICICI Bank, SBI Cards Leads New Credit Card Issuance as HDFC Bank under Temporary Halt 

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ICICI-Bank,-SBI-Cards-see-robust-growth-in-credit-cardsICICI Bank and SBI Cards have a strong growth in new Credit card issuance from December 2020 to February 2021, after the temporary halt of HDFC Bank Ltd from issuing new cards from December 2020.


On December 2, 2020, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has stopped HDFC which has the largest credit card base in India from issuing new credit card due to its series of digital banking outages.

Comparison of outstanding credit cards(RBI data):

Bank Outstanding credit cards as of  February 2021Oustanding credit cards as of December 2020
HDFC Bank1.51 crore1.53 crore
ICICI 1.03 crore 99.1 lakh
SBI Cards1.17 crore1.14 crore
Axis Bank70.36 lakh 68.7 lakh

About the growth phase of ICICI:-

  • It became the 2nd largest credit card issuer as it has captured around 43.4 per cent of the total incremental cards issued by banks between Nov. 30, 2020, and Feb. 28, 2021, and it issued 6.66 lakh cards out of the total 15.34 lakh new credit cards given out by the system.
  • ICICI-Amazon Pay credit card issued by ICICI in December 2020 has also helped ICICI Bank to grow its credit card loans.
  • Market share: In FY21 ICICI Bank gained the highest incremental market share of 32.4%, followed by  SBI Card at 30.6%.

Key points about credit card issuance:

  • In February 2021, around 5.49 lakh new credit cards were issued in India which shows a 47 per cent year-on-year (y-o-y) decline, and the total credit card base stood at 61.6 million at the end of February 2021, an 8 per cent y-o-y decline.
  • There were a total of 6.16 crore outstanding credit cards as of February 2021 end compared to 6.03 crore at the end of December 2020.
  • Worldline’s India Digital Payments Report in 2020 stated that 15 banks only accounted for the 95 per cent credit cards issued in India.

Recent Related News:

On March 25, 2021, HDFC Bank, was adjudged the ‘India’s Best Bank for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)’ at the Asiamoney Best Bank Awards 2021 of Asiamoney for the transformation of its Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) business.

About HDFC Bank:

Establishment – 1994
Headquarters– Mumbai, Maharashtra
MD & CEO – Sashidhar Jagdishan
Tagline– We understand your world

About ICICI Bank:

Establishment – 1995(Incorporated in 1994)
Headquarters – Mumbai, Maharashtra
MD& CEO –  Sandeep Bakhshi
Tagline – Hum hai na, Khayal Apka