Janalakshmi Financial Services (JFS), India's largest microfinance organization, announced the receipt of the final licence from Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to set up operations in the small finance bank category. The small finance bank will commence operations in the second quarter of the current financial year. JFS plans to set up 300 bank branches during the year covering the major locations in India.

The licence to operate a 'small finance bank' will enable all existing customers in excess of 5 million of Janalakshmi Financial Services to access financial services beyond the scope of microfinance. This is aimed at addressing financial inclusion and to empower the unbanked segments of the society with several financial tools such as savings account, cashless transactions and so on. The bank is also building innovative financial products which every aspiring Indian wants to avail.

V S Radhakrishnan, MD and CEO of Janalakshmi Financial Services Ltd, said, "We are excited about this and this will take us closer to our vision of financial inclusion in its true sense. We are fundamentally a unique organization with key differentiators such as primary focus on inclusion, significantly advanced technology platform and top-class management team. We are well capitalized with investments from world's leading institutions which ensures seamless delivery towards our vision."

Janalakshmi Financial Services has already touched the lives of more than 8 million people over the past 9 years and plans to continue its endeavour towards financial inclusion for the coming years in the form of a small finance bank.

JFS is promoted by Jana foundation, which is an urban inclusion think tank based in Bangalore with a vision to transform urban India where financial inclusion and enhanced quality of life are assured to all those who aspire to help themselves.

The Foundation undertakes various activities that deepen understanding of financial inclusion and its many challenges. It addresses policy issues through its financial advisory services; education, skilling, livelihood initiatives, community connect activities in order to help customers to improve the quality of their lives and help them meet customer needs comprehensively.

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