The process started instantly after Independence, with the setting up of the Industrial Finance Corporation (IFCI) in 1948 to embark on long term term-financing for industries. State Financial Corporations (SFCs) were formed under an Act that came into effect from August 1952 to endorse state-level, small and medium-sized industries with industrial finance. In January 1955, the Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI), the first development finance institution in the private sector, came to be set up, with backing and funding of the World Bank. In June 1958, the Refinance Corporation for Industry was established, which was later taken over by the Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI). Other DFIs that were launched included the Agriculture Refinance Corporation (1963), Rural Electrification Corporation Ltd. and HUDCO. Two other major steps in institution building were the setting up of IDBI as an apex term-lending institution and the Unit Trust of India (UTI) as an investment institution, both starting operations in July 1964 as subsidiaries of the Reserve Bank of India. There were new initiatives at the level of the states as well in the 1960s. State governments setup State Industrial Development Corporations (SIDCs) to inspire industrial development in their territories.
Specialized financial institutions set up after 1974 included NABARD (1981), EXIM Bank (1982), Shipping Credit and Investment Company of India (1986), Power Finance Corporation, Indian Railway Finance Corporation (1986), Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (1987), Technology Development and Information Company of India, a venture fund later known as IFCI Venture Capital Funds Ltd. and ICICI Venture Funds Management Ltd. (1988), National Housing Bank (1988), the Tourism Finance Corporation of India, set up by IFCI (1989), Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), with functions relating to the micro, medium and small industries sector taken out of IDBI (1989).
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