Financial Services Consulting

In the last few years, the increasing and diverse needs of the growing corporate sector encouraged the steady growth of the financial services market in India.

UC has covered a wide spectrum of financial services like broking firms, investment services, financial consulting, evergreen national banks, numerous private banks, mutual funds, car and home loans, equity market and other banking services.

Recent illustrative engagements include assisting a US based financial major who wanted to enter the Indian insurance market, developing growth strategy for a leading global bank to identify and dominate top 5 non traditional SME sectors, assessing the needs of prime target customer segmented as mass affluent class for a leading bank, improving the customer experience by re-designing key customer interaction points for a leading NBFC company and more.

Practice Areas

  • The banking landscape is changing rapidly in India. The new regulatory regime headed by the finance ministry and RBI officials are putting in place a host of measures to vastly improve the way banking is done in this country. Our experience indicates that wholesale banking has taken its competitiveness among banks to a level of a client. The bankers need to smartly identify their clients and industry segments, and ensure that their human capital is sufficiently capable of managing these key accounts. The future competitiveness in this segment will be housed on three pillars. First, cherry picking customers; second, proactively developing capabilities by predicting future banking needs of the client; third, putting in place strong governance to regularly monitor environment that impacts its clients. MNC and domestic banks alike, today are trying to find answers to these questions. Failure to be competent at satisfying these demands would imply stressed assets sharply denting the profitability of the bank and necessitating need for recapitalisation of banks, a situation that India cannot afford any more.
  • With the impact of the financial crisis and resulting changes to the regulatory landscape and consumer behaviors, retail banks have had to adapt rapidly in order to regain trust and remain competitive. UC works with our retail clients to help them modify their business models, identify cost efficiencies and identify new growth initiatives and customer-centric strategies
  • In light of the exponential growth expected in rural financing and given the clients strong commitment to the Indian market, the top management of an international bank was evaluating entry in semi urban and rural markets and asked UC to assess market potential and business models for the same. We conducted in-depth primary research across eight locations to identify key financial products, segment rural customers, and we analysed average interest rates and delinquency rates across product categories and estimated the overall potential for rural credit in India
  • A leading bank intended to expand their presence in the priority banking space, catering to the Mass Affluent Class (MAC) segment and hired UC to develop a strategy to cater to this emerging customer space. We provided a detailed understanding of the market and the competitive landscape of the industry, along with the estimated wallet size for outlined products and services, and provided a perspective on differentiation opportunities and/ or points of parity.
  • A leading European bank was looking to grow its presence in India through focused attention on specific underpenetrated areas of corporate banking like the factoring and leasing market, by growing its customer base for its existing corporate banking offering. UC assessed the market potential of all banking products, identified target industries and customer segments and explored the opportunity to partner with local institutions to accelerate market penetration. This led to the realignment of client focus in terms key industries, customer segments and products. 

  • High networth individuals and organisations often seek UC's assistance to efficiently deploy their assets and maximise returns. UC helps management teams identify growth opportunities and new service models by combing rigorous analysis and market feedback from our regular interactions with thought leaders in the marketplace
  • One of the largest mutual fund houses in India was faced with the challenge of finding, winning and retaining their channel partners, and intended to professionalise their sales and distribution processes. UC designed the process manuals of the sales & distribution function, for the sales management process, managing channel partners and investor relations
  • Given the fast changing shape of the global financial services industry, increased competition and an increasing regulatory environment, a brokerage company engaged UC to define a clear strategic roadmap and provide initiatives to sustain growth. UC studied the global trends to assess the impact of the increasing use of internet and technology, to tie-up between global exchanges and for the evolution of new products/ services/ business models being adopted by successful firms, and the internal capabilities of the client to define a new business model
  • An investment banker had developed a hypothesis that the Non-Resident Indian's (NRIs) wealth management was an attractive market space and engaged UC to create a comprehensive and clear map of the NRIs, and gain insights into their wealth management patterns. UC segmented the NRIs based on their practices and wealth / investment habits, developed a wealth distribution pattern based on the countries of residence, undertook a competitor scan to understand current offerings and unmet investment needs and created a map of different customer segments to be targeted and potential marketing initiatives that could be undertaken to gain traction within the market.

  • SMEs in India have long been regarded as a segment that carries huge potential and also a segment that carries the highest risk. SMEs in India are large enough to impact the competitiveness of the economy and GDP. Despite their importance to the economy, they remain inefficient, small scale and sub optimal. Our experience with SMEs clearly points to a complete change needed from concept to execution, be it their management, strategy, operations, organisation or information systems. While effective clusters are needed in India, no one is taking the initiative to fund this ecosystem and the improvement is left to individual companies. This has considerably slowed the speed of their improvement and therefore has produced few companies that could be world class in their approach. We think that SMEs must never shy from taking improvement steps simply because they may not be enough to solve all of their issues. At the same time, they must invest their time and energy by combining the force of their peers to make a change on a larger scale
  • UC has developed a growth strategy for a leading global bank to identify and dominate top 5 non-traditional SME sectors
  • A leading private sector bank into the small and medium enterprise market also approached UC for an entry strategy in India
  • UC has also assessed the small and medium enterprise market potential in India and defined an entry strategy for an non-banking finance company.

Case examples of our work

Please contact us at execution@universalconsulting.com for additional information