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Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs): Navigating the Diverse Landscape – Types, Compliance, and RBI Directives

Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs): Navigating the Diverse Landscape - Types, Compliance, and RBI Directives


Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs) constitute a vital segment of India’s financial ecosystem, offering a wide array of financial services. Understanding the nuances of NBFC types, regulatory frameworks, and compliance mandates is essential for stakeholders to navigate this dynamic landscape effectively. This comprehensive guide delves into the various categories of NBFCs, their classifications, compliance requirements, and recent regulatory directives issued by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in 2024.

Understanding Non-Banking Financial Companies types: Definition and Regulatory Framework

NBFCs, registered under the Companies Act, 1956 or Companies Act, 2013, engage in activities such as loans and advances, acquisition of securities, leasing, hire-purchase, and insurance. However, they exclude entities primarily engaged in agriculture, industrial activities, or sale/purchase of goods. RBI regulates NBFCs under Section 45-IA of the RBI Act, 1934, mandating registration and minimum Net Owned Funds (NOF) of ₹2 crore (subsequently revised to ₹10 crore).

Types and Categories of Non Banking Financial Companies types

  1. Deposit-Taking and Non-Deposit Taking NBFCs:

    • Deposit-Taking NBFCs solicit deposits under various schemes, while Non-Deposit Taking NBFCs do not engage in deposit-taking activities.
  2. Systemically Important Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFC-ND-SI and NBFC-ND):

    • NBFC-ND-SI: Assets exceed ₹500 crore.
    • NBFC-ND: Assets are below ₹500 crore.
  3. By Activity:

    • Asset Finance Company (AFC): Financing physical assets supporting economic activities.
    • Investment Company (IC): Primarily acquires securities.
    • Loan Company (LC): Provides finance for activities other than its own.
    • Infrastructure Finance Company (IFC): Focuses on infrastructure loans.
    • Systemically Important Core Investment Company (CIC-ND-SI): Invests predominantly in group companies’ shares and securities.
    • Infrastructure Debt Fund: NBFC (IDF-NBFC): Facilitates long-term debt flow into infrastructure projects.
    • NBFC-Micro Finance Institution (NBFC-MFI): Extends microfinance to eligible borrowers.
    • NBFC-Factors: Engages in factoring business.
    • Mortgage Guarantee Companies (MGC): Specializes in mortgage guarantee business.
    • NBFC-Non-Operative Financial Holding Company (NOFHC): Facilitates setting up new banks.

Recent Regulatory Directives by RBI (2024)

The RBI Directives introduced significant regulatory changes impacting NBFCs, including:

  • Increased NOF requirements phased over time.
  • Changes in Non-Performing Asset (NPA) classification norms.
  • Establishment of Risk Management Committee (RMC).
  • Consolidation of NBFCs in a group for classification.
  • Leverage ratio restrictions.
  • Enhanced disclosure requirements.
  • Loan policies for directors and senior officers.
  • Board composition criteria.

Compliance and Reporting Obligations

NBFCs must adhere to periodic reporting requirements based on asset size, covering financial parameters, prudential norms, liquidity, and structural sensitivity. The introduction of XBRL returns and CIMS portal for filing enhances reporting efficiency and transparency.


The regulatory landscape governing Non-Banking Financial Companies in India continues to evolve, necessitating robust compliance mechanisms and proactive adherence to regulatory directives. Stakeholders must stay abreast of regulatory changes, ensure adherence to compliance requirements, and implement robust risk management practices to thrive in this dynamic environment.



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