With the growing Indian economy creating new millionaires and billionaires, there is a need for professionals who can strategically manage and grow their investment portfolios
Wealth management is about managing and preserving existing wealth and trying to identify opportunities to accumulate more for corporates/institutions, High Net-Worth Individuals (HNI) and Ultra HNIs. This is done by creating an investment portfolio with customised investment strategies.
The key to create a winning portfolio is to use knowledge and expertise to identify the right mix of fund managers across different asset classes. A winning portfolio has specific strategies to maintain and grow a client’s wealth, based on their age, financial goals and risk appetite. Growing and maintaining wealth is a tedious process with unpredicted outcomes. Hence, the need for an experienced wealth manager who will minimise the risk of loss and smoothly navigate one’s financial journey through uncertain economic conditions and achieve his/her targets.
Wealth managers need to understand the client’s needs and invest in products suited to the client’s goals. One needs the capacity to understand, research and connect with clients. An entrepreneurial approach is another key quality.
As the Indian economy grows, there will be a higher penetration in equity markets. The number of entrepreneurs will surge too. According to one recent article, India has added 34 new billionaires last year. According to Knight Frank, India ranks 12th and had 5,986 such individuals in 2019, which is likely to reach 10,354 by 2024. The number of billionaires in India, on the other hand, is likely to reach 113 by 2024, up from 104 in 2019. Among asset classes, Indian Ultra HNIs are the most aggressive in equity investment with 72% willing to invest in this asset class compared to a global average of 29%.
The above facts strongly indicate the growing need for a trusted wealth manager or financial advisor who will help both budding millionaires and billionaires to manage and grow their wealth corpus and identify core wealth creation opportunities.
Though there is a spike in demand of good wealth managers, the Indian wealth management industry is still in nascent stage. The industry finds it difficult to recruit and retain experienced professionals.
What do organisations look for in a wealth manager? A postgraduate degree in Finance/Economics/Management is a must. An additional certification like Certified Financial Planner (CFP) or Chartered Wealth Manager (CWM) always stands out. Prior experience as a private banker in banks, or other wealth management firms, ensures that the correct client base is tapped. Also, a wealth manager must be analytical, able to understand complex information and have strong mathematical skills, confidence and good presentation skills.
With the accelerated pace of our economy, knowledge about wealth creation and various micro and macro-economic factors will help make a career in wealth management a self-fulfilling and a rewarding one.
The writer is Executive Director and Head – HR, Motilal Oswal Financial Services.