Syndicate Bank was founded in 1925 in Udupi, Karnataka with a capital of Rs. 8,000 by Sri Upendra Ananth Pai (a businessman), Sri Vaman Kudva (an engineer) and Dr.T M A Pai (a physician).
The main objective of the bank was to extend financial assistance to the local weavers who were crippled by a crisis in the handloom industry through mobilising small savings from the community.
The bank collected 2 annas daily at the doorsteps of the depositors through its agents under its Pigmy Deposit Scheme started in 1928. This scheme is the bank's brand equity now and the bank collects around Rs. 2 crore per day under the scheme.
The bank was among the first to come up with a "All Women Branch" at Seshadripuram in Bangalore in 1962.
In 1964, this was the first bank to venture into agricultural financing when the Banking system considered it as a risky and unconventional proposition.
In 2006, the bank inaugurated the SyndBank Services Limited, the 1st BPO outfit of a nationalised Bank.