One of the earliest banks in South India, South Indian Bank (SIB) came into being during the Swadeshi movement. It was incorporated on 1st March 1928 by the fulfillment of the dreams of a group of enterprising men who joined together at Thrissur to provide the people a safe, efficient and service oriented repository of savings of the community on one hand and to free the business community from the clutches of greedy money lenders on the other by providing need based credit at reasonable rates of interest. Now the bank accounts about the network of 520 branches, 17 extension counters and 260 ATMs. Through all, the bank serves the services under the areas of Accounts/Deposits, Loans, Mutual Funds, Insurance, Money Transfers and some other value added services.
The first branch outside Kerala was opened by the bank in Coimbatore during the year 1941. SIB, the first among the private sector banks in Kerala to become a scheduled bank in 1946 under the RBI Act. During the year 1963, the bank took over the assets and liabilities of Kshemavilasam Banking Company Ltd and the Ambat Bank Pvt Ltd, Chittur, Kerala. The year 1964 was notable one in the saga of SIB; the bank had acquired ten banks in the single year of 1964 itself, the list of banks include Public Bank Ltd, Suburban Bank Pvt Ltd, Vijalakshmi Bank Pvt Ltd, Chalakudy Bank Ltd, Mukkattukara Catholic Bank Ltd, Assyrian Charities Banking Company Ltd, The Catholic Syrian Christian Bank Ltd, Malabar Bank Ltd, Bharata Union Bank Ltd and Kozhuvanal Bank Ltd. SIB made its entry into merchant banking activities by supporting/underwriting 99 new issues in the year 1990.
A Currency Chest activity of the bank on behalf of the RBI was started to execute in April of the year 1992. Also during the same year of 1992, SIB unlocked a NRI branch in November and developed an in-house, a fully integrated branch automation software in addition to the in-house partial automation solution operational. During the year 1993, the bank started an Industrial Finance Branch in the month of March and opened an 'Overseas Branch' to cater exclusively to the export and import business in June of the same year 1993. Initial Public Offering of the bank was made and went to public in the year 1998. The Sibertech (Technology Promotion Drive of South Indian Bank) project, a comprehensive and centralized banking solution was launched by the bank in 2001 and also SIB entered into alliance with three exchange houses in the Gulf during the identical year of 2001.
A tie-up was made by the bank with insurance player in the year 2002 for the distribution of the products of the insurance company. The internet banking facility, namely Sibernet was introduced by the bank to its customers in the year 2003 and also made an agreement with Master Card International to launch Maestro, the Global ATM/Debit Card. During the year 2004, the bank had celebrated 75 years of its existence. The Follow on Public Offering of the company was made in the year 2005. The Bank won a special award for excellence in Banking Technology from IDRBT (Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology) in September of the year 2006.
The bank has achieved 100% Core Banking Solutions by 24th March of the year 2007. Further to strengthen the ATM reach and global acceptability Bank has introduced Master Card Global Debit- cum- ATM card, which can be used at ATMs and merchandise all over the world. SIB has emerged as the Best Performer in Asset Quality category in Analyst 2008 Survey of Indian Banks among private sector banks which include both the new generation and the traditional banks in India.