Kochi, the second largest city in the Indian state of Kerala, was known as Cochin earlier. Kochi is situated on the western coast of India, overlooking the Arabian Sea and is popular for its scenic beaches and beautiful backwaters. Sometimes called the Queen of the Arabian Sea, this historic city was a harbor and trading center for spices. The civic administration of Kochi is divided into 74 wards which include a few localities situated in the outskirts of the city. Kochi is considered to be the commercial capital of Kerala for its natural harbor and several industries in the areas of chemical, IT and health services. A major industrial area in Kerala, Kalamassery, is situated around 17 kilometers from the City Center and it not only houses manufacturing units but many IT and Financial firms. The LuLu Mall at Ernakulam serves as a landmark as it is the largest shopping mall in India. The Kochi Port, the Fort Kochi area, the Syro-Malabar Church and the beautiful beaches make Kochi and amazing location for tourism. It is also connected to nearby tourist destinations like Aleppy, Munnar and Thekkady. Kochi is the business center for Kerala as most of the major private banks and financial institutions have their offices in the city, catering to the different financial needs of people of Kochi.
In 1943, Rai Bahadur Lala Sohan Lal Ji, the first Chairman of OBC, founded it in Lahore. Within four years of its existence, the Oriental Bank of Commerce had to face Partition between India and Pakistan. The bank had to shut its branches in the newly formed Pakistan and move its registered office to Amritsar. The period of 1970-76 had been the most challenging phase in the history of the Bank. The OBC merged with Global Trust Bank (GTB) on 14 August 2004. The acquisition brought 103 branches with it, which increased OBCs branch number total to 1092. The bank presents a wide range of banking products and financial services such as deposit accounts, credit cards with a tie-up with SBI, Insurance products, ATMs, loans, debit cards, Internet banking, Self-banking halls, call center, mobile banking, etc. The Bank has introduced another peoples participation in the planning process at grass root level fundamentally to tackle the maladies of poverty. The Grameen Projects venture aimed to alleviate poverty while identifying the reasons responsible for the failure or success. The OBC has already introduced a GRAMEEN PROJECT in Dehradun District (UK) and Hanumangarh District in Rajasthan.