Sandeep Sharma, a 38 year old, father of two, is the CTO of an emerging Gaming Tech Startup. His day to day routine includes a 12 hour work day, 7 hours of sleep, 1 hour of fitness workout, 2 hours of travel and 2 hours of family time. Amidst his packed schedule, Sandeep has one thing on his mind – how to put his high 7 digit salary to good use. So far, all he understands well is fixed deposits. And for lack of time and suitable awareness, he has made tax saving investments into a couple of LICs. Sandeep’s colleagues have been telling him about stocks and mutual funds. But his dad has warned him against the risk of “stock markets”. Sandeep is an IT professional with limited understanding of finance and he has a hundred questions on his mind regarding these instruments.
Sandeep is just one of the many examples of individuals who have enough surplus to invest but do not possess the answers which make the decision making process easier. Moreover, Indians are extremely cautious of the ‘push sales’ culture for financial products in India and lack of trust is something that has kept this section of people away from making the right investment choices.
CAGRfunds, a client centric financial planning company, addresses this problem in a manner which brings the best of both worlds – old and new. Founded by Vikash, Shruti and Siddharth in late 2015, CAGRfunds offers more than several reasons to boast of a client retention ratio that is over 98%. The core of their offering lies in helping people take the right financial decisions by establishing their financial goals. This means that they help people arrive at answers to questions like which insurance policy to buy and how much SIP they should be doing. CAGRfunds follows a client relationship model wherein they engage in multiple conversations with the client. This helps them understand an individual deeper and better.
While an investor still feels the innate need to interact with a human for their money matters, they feel extremely averse to cumbersome processes which entail investing into mutual funds. And this was a problem that the team fixed by launching their online platform in late 2016. A simple, clean and easy to understand interface made it possible for the trio to break the confines of their physical locations and onboard clients from all corners of the country. Telephonic and video based interactions provided the much needed personal touch and customization. Today, CAGRfunds caters to more than 400 families and manages an AUM of over INR 45Cr.
While mutual funds have been the center of their offering, goal based investing is what the team guides their clients to do. “Mapping your investments to specific objectives makes it behaviorally easier for you to avoid the wrong decisions such as stopping an SIP when markets under perform. An end goal such as planning for your child’s education corpus, keeps you going”, says Shruti.
“Awareness does not necessarily come from reading articles on the internet. With overflow of information, one can find contradicting schools of thought online. And there emerges the need for educating and coaching”, says Vikash. With this intent in mind and passion in heart, the CAGRfunds team has been conducting corporate workshops – RISEWISE. These workshops are aimed at spreading awareness on importance of starting financial planning early in life. A one on one interaction with every employee is what differentiates CAGRfunds from other institutions that conduct similar workshops. Not to mention that these workshops are also a source of interesting insights for the team – something that helps them understand the investor psyche better. “In fact, conducting these sessions helped us identify our strengths – the fact that we are good at being able to establish trust with those who speak to us, present candid facts and facilitate realistic expectations is something that our clients value and relish”, Shruti mentions as she reflects on their evolution and growth.