Harnessing Technology to Reveal the Potential of Stressed Assets

By Srikanth
6 Min Read
Harnessing Technology to Reveal the Potential of Stressed Assets 1

The Indian banking system is dealing with a huge amount of non-performing assets (NPAs), loans that are in arrears or default from borrowers. At any given time, there are more than ₹8 lakh crore worth of stressed assets in the form of NPAs, with at least ₹2 lakh crore written off annually by banks. Major lenders like SBI, PNB, and UBI have had to write off tens of thousands of crores in recent years.


These NPAs are often backed by valuable real estate assets like land, buildings, apartments, and commercial properties that were mortgaged against the defaulted loans. When borrowers fail to pay, banks are left holding these properties which they can attempt to sell to recover their dues. However, there is huge untapped potential in this portfolio of stressed assets.

The demand for distressed real estate at discounted prices is immense from companies, investors, and individuals alike. Yet there is lack of transparency and accessibility when it comes to this market. Buyers struggle to find comprehensive information on available properties, their locations, conditions, and pricing. Vital details may be missing or obscured, like an apartment being listed only by its survey number rather than the area name.

With over 3,000 banks and financial institutions in India holding NPAs, including public sector banks, private banks, NBFCs, cooperatives and more, there is a mountain of stressed assets but no centralized platform to discover and transact them efficiently. 

This opacity represents a major missed opportunity. As per RBI reports, gross NPAs are around 6% for scheduled banks alone. When lending profits are often arbitraged at just 2-3%, having 6% troubled assets is deeply unsustainable for the banking sector’s health. Antiquated recovery processes like publishing auction notices in local newspapers every few weeks are failing to resolve this crisis effectively.

There are now platforms that are utilizing technology to democratize access to these stressed assets market for all stakeholders. By aggregating NPA portfolios across lenders onto a single unified marketplace, these platforms exponentially increase visibility and reach for distressed properties. Granular search tools and robust data allow buyers to filter by criteria like budget, location, and asset type to find matches suited to their requirements. 

Using technologies like drone imagery, map overlays, and street views, these platforms provide an immersive experience replicating physical site visits. Buyers can explore in-depth visuals and details of properties from anywhere, evaluating investment prospects more comprehensively than outmoded ad listings allow.

The potential is overwhelming – portfolios include properties valued from ₹5-6 lakh to multiple crores, opening up opportunities for buyers across socioeconomic levels to invest in high-value real estate they could not normally access or afford at non-distressed prices. For banks, this translates to finally monetizing their stressed asset books by reaching a vastly wider pool of motivated buyers than can bid on and purchase these properties.

Let us look at some key statistics that highlight the impact potential. The finance ministry itself revealed over ₹1.32 lakh crore was recovered from written-off loans in the last five years – just 13% of the total write-offs. With more efficient price discovery and market access, recovery rates could skyrocket. If a bank has ₹10,000 crore in distressed assets, delays cost over ₹800 crore annually. Paying 1-3% facilitation fees to market and transact these assets swiftly would be highly profitable.

India’s banking system is built on public faith and confidence. Lingering NPAs threaten this foundation. We have the technology to bring these assets to light, realizing their value by connecting sellers and buyers in a transparent, data-driven manner never seen before in this market. With digitized land records, tech-enabled lending, and cutting-edge visualization capabilities, the pieces are in place.

What is needed is an ecosystem shift where all stakeholders – lenders, borrowers, investors, regulators, and government – prioritize sustained efforts to resolve the NPA crisis. Lenders must actively market their stressed portfolios rather than merely auctioning them locally. Policymakers should incentivize and mandate adoption of technologies that democratize access to this market.

By realizing the full potential of stressed assets, we can safeguard not just the banking sector’s fiscal health, but energize investment and economic growth by injecting recovered capital back into the economy as lending power. The solution lies in leveraging innovative tech platforms to spotlight the untapped value lying scattered across balance sheets. It is an opportunity we cannot afford to ignore.

Share This Article
Passionate Tech Blogger on Emerging Technologies, which brings revolutionary changes to the People life.., Interested to explore latest Gadgets, Saas Programs
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *