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Privatisation, Disintermediation and Localisation to define financial services in India

CFA Society India, in collaboration with CFA Institute, the global association of investment professionals, hosted its 3rd India Wealth Management Conference in Mumbai.

It brought together global and Indian experts to share their insights on best practices and frameworks - from asset allocation, manager selection, behavioural coaching, and succession planning - against the backdrop of robust and widespread economic growth, which has enhanced the importance of wealth management in India.

"Domestic savings are critical for India's growth and hence the wealth management segment, which is the last mile for delivery of financial products and services to investors, is of critical importance. Investment industry professionals and CFA charterholders have an important role to play here by setting high standards and demonstrating the highest level of professionalism in dealing with investors," said Jayesh Gandhi, CFA, President, CFA Society India.

Rashesh Shah, Chairman and CEO, Edelweiss Group said, "Privatisation has happened by gradual loss of market share by government entities to private players. Three trends which will define financial services in India are privatisation, disintermediation and localisation. India is rapidly compounding and is a capital surplus country. If you want a good compounding rate, you should have a good growth rate, good starting base, good time horizon. We are at a stage where we have all the three factors. For us, five trillion dollars is not hard to achieve."

On building a wealth business in India, Karan Bhagat, Founder, MD and CEO, IIFL Investment Managers opined, "Our business is laborious, and we need to stay in touch with the client. People, products, and platform shape the business. Products to a wealth management firm are what content is to Netflix."

Known for his work in behavioural finance, Professor Meir Statman shared his insights on culture and wealth and urged practitioners to focus on being "a well-being manager and not a wealth manager." According to him, "People are not rational, people are normal. Would you rather get a rose from your loved one or $10? In every trade, there is an idiot. If you don't know who it is, you're in trouble."

The day-long 3rd India Wealth Management Conference was attended by nearly 350 finance professionals, including CFA charterholders and wealth management professionals. It had a stellar line-up of global and Indian speakers including Nick Pollard, MD, Asia Pacific, CFA Institute, William Poole, distinguished senior fellow, Mises Institute, and senior advisor, Merk Investments, Xu Sitao, chief economist, Deloitte China, Shiv Gupta, founder and CEO, Sanctum Wealth Management, Navneet Munot, CFA, CIO, SBI Funds Management Pvt. Ltd., Bharat Shah, ED, ASK Group, and Naganath Sundaresan, president and CIO, Franklin Templeton Alternative Investments (India) Pvt. Ltd. among others.

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Business Standard