ICICI | History | Objectives | Functions | Financial Assistance | Roles

History of Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI)

The creation of Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI) is another milestone in the growth of the Indian Capital Market. It was incorporated in the year 1955, as a company registered under the Companies Act. The ICICI was incorporated to finance small scale and medium industries in the private sector.

ICICI Bank - History, Objectives, Functions, Financial Assistance, Roles
Image: ICICI Bank – History, Objectives, Functions, Financial Assistance, Roles

The IFCI and SFCs confined themselves to lending activity and kept away from underwriting and investing in business though they were authorized to subscribe for the shares and debentures of the companies and to undertake underwriting business. Therefore, a large number of up and coming enterprises faced continuous problems in raising funds in the capital market.

Besides, they were not in a position to secure the desired amount of loan assistance from the financial institutions due to their thin equity base. To encourage industrial development in the private sector, a considerable provision of underwriting facility was considered necessary to accelerate the phase of the industrialization. To fill these gaps, the ICICI was established.

Objectives of the ICICI

The major objective of the ICICI was to meet the needs of the industry for permanent and long term funds in the private sector. In general, the major objectives of the Corporation are:

1. To assist in creation, growth and modernization of business enterprises in the non-public sector.

2. To encourage and promote the involvement of internal and external capital sources, in such enterprises.

3. To motivate pvt ownership of industrial investment and to promote and assist in the expansion of markets.

4. To provide equipment finance.

5. To provide finance for rehabilitation of industrial units.

Functions of the ICICI

In order to accomplish the above objectives, the Corporation performs the following functions:

1. Providing finance in the form of long-term or medium term loans or equity participation.

2. Sponsoring and underwriting new issues of shares and other securities,

3. Guaranteeing loans from other private investment sources.

4. Making funds available for reinvestment by revolving investment as rapidly as possible.

5. Providing project advisory services i.e. offering advice –

  1. to private sector companies in the pre-investment stages on Government policies and procedures, feasibility studies and joint venture search, and
  2. to Central and State Governments on specific policy related issues.

Types of financial assistance of the ICICI

The Corporation provides finance-in the following forms:

1. Underwriting of public issues and offer or sale of industrial securities.

2. Direct subscription to such securities.

3. Securing loans in rupees payable over periods up to 15 years.

4. Providing similar loans in foreign currencies for payment of imported capital equipment and technical service.

5. Guaranteeing payments for credit made by others.

6. Providing credit facilities to manufacturers for promoting sale of industrial equipment on deferred payment terms.

7. Providing financial services like leasing, installment sale and asset credit.

The ICICI sells securities from its own portfolio to the investors whenever it can get a reasonable price for them. It does so for the dual purpose of revolving its resources for new investments and for encouraging the investment habit in others and thereby promoting a wide spread distribution of private industrial securities. Thus, unlike normal investors the ICICI does not retain successful investments merely because they are profitable.

ICICI assisted manufacturing industries in all sectors, that is, the private sector, the joint sector, the public sector and the cooperative sector but the major beneficiary was the private sector. ICICI’s assistance comprised of foreign currency loans, rupee loans, guarantees, and subscription of shares and debentures. The Corporation showed increasing interest in the development of new industries in backward regions.

There was a remarkably significant increase in financial assistance by ICICI in recent years.

Role of the ICICI

The Corporation started a Merchant Banking Division in 1973 for advising its clients on a selective basis, on raising finances in suitable forms and on restructuring of finances in the existing companies. It also advises clients on amalgamation proposals. Assistance is provided in preparing proposals for submission to financial institutions and banks and for negotiations with them for loans, underwriting etc. This Division acts as Managers to the issue of capital. Assistance is also provided for completion of formalities connected with the public issue and of legal formalities for raising loans.

In 1982, the ICICI gave a new dimension to its merchant banking division by offering to provide counseling for industrial investment in India to non-resident Indians and persons of Indian origin living abroad. This is likely to prove not only the least expensive route for technological up gradation but also a source of foreign currency funds by way of risk capital.

It has set up Venture Capital Funds for the promotion of green field companies and risk capital investment and joined the other financial institutions in setting up SHCIL, CRISIL and OTC Exchange of India Ltd. It has recently set up its own bank and a mutual fund like the UTI.

The Corporation’s vision has been extending far beyond its immediate function of funding industrial projects. It has been looking at all sectors of the economy and wherever a need was perceived, has designed either a new concept or a new instrument, or even a new institution to cater to it. In this regard, its development activities have encompassed such diverse areas as technology, financing, project promotion, rural development, human resources development and publications.

It has set up ICICI Brokerage Services Limited in March 1995. It is a 100% subsidiary of I-SEC. It commenced its securities brokerage activities in 1996. It is registered with the National Stock Exchange of India Limited and The Mumbai Stock Exchange.

ICICI set up ICICI Credit Corporation in 1997, which later renamed as ICICI Personal Financial Services Limited in 1999. It is offering a comprehensive range of goods and services to retail customers.

ICICI Capital Services Ltd. was originally set up as SCICI securities Ltd. as a wholly owned subsidiary of erstwhile SCICI Ltd. in 1994. Its object is providing stock broking services to the institutional clients and undertaking activities such as underwriting, primary market placements and distribution, industry and company research etc. It became a wholly owned subsidiary of ICICI with effect from April 1, 1996.

ICICI has established ICICI bank for performing commercial banking functions in 1994. The bank offers a wide variety of domestic and international banking services.