Development Banks are banks that provide financial assistance to business that requires medium and long-term capital for purchase of machinery and equipment, for using latest technology, or for expansion and modernization. A development bank is a multipurpose institution which shares entrepreneurial risk, changes its approach in tune with industrial climate and encourages new industrial projects to bring about speedier economic growth.

These banks also undertake other development measures like subscribing to the shares and debentures issued by companies, in case of under subscription of the issue by the public.

There are three important national level development banks. They are:

  1. Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI)
  2. Industrial finance Corporation of India (IFCI)
  3. Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI)

Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI)

The IDBI was established on July 1, 1964 under an Act of Parliament. It was set up as the central co-ordinating agency, leader of development banks and principal financing institution for industrial finance in the country. Originally, IDBI was a wholly owned subsidiary of RBI. But it was delinked from RBI w.e.f. Feb. 16, 1976.

IDBI is an apex institution to co-ordinate, supplement and integrate the activities of all existing specialised financial institutions. It is a refinancing and re-discounting institution operating in the capital market to refinance term loans and export credits. It is in charge of conducting techno-economic studies. It was expected to fulfil the needs of rapid industrialisation.

The IDBI is empowered to finance all types of concerns engaged or to be engaged in the manufacture or processing of goods, mining, transport, generation and distribution of power etc., both in the public and private sectors.

Industrial finance Corporation of India (IFCI)

The IFCI is the first Development Financial Institution in India. It is a pioneer in development banking in India. It was established in 1948 under an Act of Parliament. The main objective of IFCI is to render financial assistance to large scale industrial units, particularly at a time when the ordinary banks are not forth coming to assist these concerns. Its activities include project financing, financial services, merchant banking and investment.

Till 1993, IFCI continued to be Developmental Financial Institution. After 1993, it was changed from a statutory corporation to a company under the Indian Companies Act, 1956 and was named as IFCI Ltd with effect from October 1999.

Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI)

ICICI was set up in 1955 as a public limited company. It was to be a private sector development bank in so far as there was no participation by the Government in its share capital. It is a diversified long term financial institution and provides a comprehensive range of financial products and services including project and equipment financing, underwriting and direct subscription to capital issues, leasing, deferred credit, trusteeship and custodial services, advisory services and business consultancy.

The main objective of the ICICI was to meet the needs of the industry for long term funds in the private sector.

Apart from this the Industrial Reconstruction Corporation of India (IRCI) established in 1971 with the main objective of revival and rehabilitation of viable sick units and was converted in to the Industrial Reconstruction Bank of India (IRBI) in 1985 with more powers

Development banks have been established at the state level too. At present in India, 18 State Financial Corporation’s (SFCs) and 26 State Industrial investment/Development Corporations (SIDCs) are functioning to look over the development banking in respective areas /states.