“Wealth management is like a family- Mom and Dad. Advice and Execution.”
For someone who has been ‘invested’ in learning about finance and investments since they were younger, Anurag Bhatia’s decision to start his own Wealth Management firm was but a natural progression.
How it all began
Anurag reflects on the time at the age of 13 when he read S S Grewal’s ‘Profitable Investment in Shares’, all in a night! He remembers his pacing heart, amplifying with every page he turned- and by dawn, he knew that this is what he wanted to do for the rest of his life.
His friends and family joke that he barely ever reads books from any other genre, so scaling up on similar parallels was sure to happen!
Once he decided to professionally step into the field that fascinated him, he pursued a BBM in Finance from Manipal University. During his time there, the seed of an idea for Minance was planted. He even started his first blog in college on the topic. Anurag then went on to do his Masters in Mathematical Finance from the London School of Economics, after which he returned to India.
He began his career in Amazon where he got a taste of how people thought about their money and finances. He calls Amazon a stepping stone as, being one of the early employees there, he got a healthy bunch of stock options initially. His discussions with colleagues, who dubbed him the ‘Stock Market guy’, lent him an insight into their views. Anurag’s suggestions on diversifying their investments always seemed to work! During his time there, he even met Jeff Bezos after one of his ideas was shortlisted to be rolled out as a feature on the site.
Anurag says, “It always starts with a tiny conversation, becomes a discussion and soon, a business.”
Owing to his interest and his conversations with his colleagues, technically speaking, his first 300 clients were from Amazon. High performers in Amazon were offered stock options and when Amazon’s stock shot up, many of his colleagues would reach out to him for help with their money management.
All about Minance and Wealth Management
When he finally started Minance Technologies, Anurag and his team built their clientele around people interested in exploring the market and identifying the opportunities it had to offer. It started off as a team of two and has now expanded to about 15 hardworking, young and dynamic go-getters!
Minance’s biggest achievement, Anurag says, was getting a patent in selling unlisted shares of pre-IPO companies. He says it made investing in these unicorn startups as easy as buying something on Amazon. Minance has transformed it into a task that is just ‘a click away’. This product, called the Minance Private Market, sells stocks of some major players yet to hit IPO and is accessible to everyone.
A challenge that Minance faced initially was a huge legal battle with the Ministry of Finance in Somalia. As it turns out, the Somalian Ministry of Finance is also called Minance, posing domain issues for the young company. The new company was up against the Finance Department of a country! However, with a lot of hard work and determination, they successfully defended their case and overcame this stiff challenge resiliently, making Minance a reality!
When asked to elaborate on what a wealth management firm essentially does, Anurag explains it quite simply. He says, “Wealth management is like a family- Mom and Dad. Advice and Execution. You know how our dads are always providing us with healthy advice and moms are executing the work. Wealth management is like that – a symphony of advice and execution. We’re investment consultants for people. We advise them on what investment to make and execute that advice. For example, if we advise someone to buy a set of 5 stocks, we’re actually sitting and placing orders on the market ourselves.”
What sets Minance apart?
Minance is a young team- they take incredible risks and learn from successes and failures over time! Minance is constantly looking for things, not just in India but globally!
The wealth management firm relentlessly races towards tapping into everything they possibly can. They grow at a steady pace and have 3000+ happy investors with approximately 220 Crore as Asset Under Management (AUM).
What sets them apart is a human connection! While Robo-advisors impersonalise investment services, Minance swims in the opposite direction. Anurag says, “We’re humans, like to be treated as such and treat our stakeholders as such. We have a saying inside the company that we’ve not done a good enough job till the Minance Partners want you to marry their daughter! Our investment operations are completely automated and the service provided is from one person to another. We like to see it as the confluence of Man & Machine.”
Innovative Products from Minance
While we have already detailed the Minance Private Market product, let’s take a look at a few others on their portfolio.
Another exceptional product from Minance is patent-protected Assets Pay Cash. On an average, if one picks any mutual fund and let’s say makes a 10% profit, with the same amount of risk and investment, they would make 11-12% over and above their mutual funds’ returns. So, if their mutual funds earn 14% in a year, their net returns with APC will be 26% to 28%.
When asked if there was a process to come up with these innovative products, Anurag says that the approach is always customer-first and feedback is appreciated. The idea is to go back to the clients, hear out their requirements, and after a brainstorming session, they develop product portfolios to maximise returns for their clients. At the end of the day, Anurag says, it is all about getting the clients the maximum return on their buck!
This article has been written by Neha Nambiar.