ICICI First Bank in India to Provide Financing to TradeCard Customers

India's second largest bank offers additional source of funding, automated transactions to exporters

India's second largest bank offers additional source of funding, automated transactions to exporters

New York — March 13, 2006 — India's second largest bank has signed a partnership agreement to offer pre- and post-export financing to customers of financial supply chain specialist TradeCard in Hong Kong and India, the solution provider has announced.

ICICI Bank is TradeCard's first financial services partner in India and its fifth partner bank in Hong Kong. TradeCard said that this latest partnership will better position it to expand its services on the Indian subcontinent, where a large and growing volume of goods that are sourced by TradeCard customers, such as apparel and footwear, are manufactured.

For ICICI Bank the strategic partnership will offer an opportunity to further expand its international reach into new markets, TradeCard said.

Online Document Requests

As part of the agreement, ICICI Bank will provide pre- and post-export finance for suppliers in India and in Hong Kong. TradeCard members in both territories will have online access to ICICI export financing directly through the TradeCard network.

Customers will be able to create and approve the finance request document online and receive approval of their request electronically. ICICI Bank has real-time access to these applications, increasing the speed with which the bank can respond to and approve the financing requests.

"As the second-largest bank in India we are committed to offering world-class financial services to our domestic and international customers, and we understand that moving away from paper is key in achieving cost savings and greater efficiency," said Bhargav Dasgupta, senior general manager and head of the International Banking Group at ICICI. "The alliance with TradeCard enables us to expand our customer base into new markets but also to support and help expedite the uptake of automated trade finance services in India."

"With its emphasis on leveraging technology for the benefit of its customers, ICICI Bank is the ideal partner in India for us," said Kurt Cavano, chairman and CEO of TradeCard. "Not only do we help them become more responsive and faster through automation but this initiative will also give them access to a new source of export finance. This is critical for Indian suppliers in the face of increasing global competition."