The wealth management unit and the first bank branch for start-ups will begin operations from India's technology hub Bengaluru before these are expanded to other parts of the country, SBI, majority-owned by the Indian government, said in a statement.

SBI is not looking to lend to start-ups immediately but will offer advisory services such as setting up a company to taxation related issues, Chairman Arundhati Bhattacharya told a news conference.

The more than two-century old bank that accounts for about a quarter of Indian bank deposits and loans is modernising its operations, growing its retail business faster and adding new segments to take on new-age private sector lenders whose profitability is higher than their state-run rivals.

India was the world's fastest growing wealth management market in 2014, according to a CapGemini and RBC Wealth Management study, spurred largely by rising personal income as well as a boom in e-commerce start-ups that has also attracted marquee foreign investors.

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