We have proposed a hybrid SVM based decision tree to speedup SVMs in its testing phase for binary classification tasks. While most existing methods addressed towards this task aim at reducing the number of support vectors, we have focused on reducing the number of test datapoints that need SVM's help in getting classified. The central idea is to approximate the decision boundary of SVM using decision trees. The resulting tree is a hybrid tree in the sense that it has both univariate and multivariate (SVM) nodes. The hybrid tree takes SVM's help only in classifying crucial datapoints lying near decision boundary; remaining less crucial datapoints are classified by fast univariate nodes. The classification accuracy of the hybrid tree is guaranteed by tuning a threshold parameter. Extensive computational comparisons on 19 publicly available datasets indicate that the proposed method achieves significant speedup when compared to SVMs, without any compromise in classification accuracy. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. ALL rights reserved.