The two neighboring cities of Hubli (or Hubballi in the local language) and Dharwad in the South Indian state of Karnataka were merged in 1961 to form the twin city of Hubli-Dharwad. The name "Hubballi" literally translates to "flowering creeper" in Kannada. The word "Dharwad" refers to a place of rest during long travel or a small habitation. While Hubli acts as the commercial center and business hub, Dharwad situated around 20 kilometers away is the administrative headquarter of the twin city. This city is the second largest in the state after the capital city of Bangalore. As history reveals, the area had been ruled by the famous Vijayanagara dynasty and later by the Mughals, the Nawabs, the Marathas as well as the Peshwas. Hubli, being the commercial hub, houses numerous of small and medium industries. The area is known for mining manganese ore and granite as well as for the agricultural production of cotton, groundnut and oilseeds. The twin cities are also adept at manufacture of textiles from the cultivated cotton. The green and scenic city of Dharwad, apart from housing the citys administrative departments, is also a seat of learning. Prestigious and renowned educational institutions like Karnataka Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS), Karnataka State Law University, The District Institute of Education and Training, University of Agricultural Sciences, etc. An IIT has also been recently established at Dharwad.
In 1964 the head office of Indian Overseas Bank was inaugurated at Mount Road. The Indian Overseas Bank has been the first public sector bank to introduce mobile banking services using Wireless Application Protocol(WAP). On 29 August 2003, the Indian Overseas Bank has opened an extension counter at Bambalapitiya, Ceylon. In 2005, the IOB began a representative office in Guangzhou; China followed which the bank opened another representative office in Kuala Lumpur and Dubai, UAE. In 2007 The bank took over Bharat Overseas Bank. After three years, Malaysia granted a commercial banking license to a local bank jointly owned by Bank Of Baroda, Indian Overseas Bank, and the Andhra Bank. The new bank named, India International Bank (IIB Malaysia), began its operations in 2012 in Kuala Lumpur and had a large population of Indians. The Andhra Bank has a 25% stake in its joint-venture, BOB owns 40%, and remaining 35% is with IOB. On 31 August 2013, the Indian Overseas Bank has incorporated an offshore banking unit in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The bank also converted its existing Extension Counter at Ceylon into a full-fledged branch. In 2014-15, the IOB bank has crossed the target of 3000 ATMs as on 2014.IOB also launched m passbook app as a new mobile banking initiative.