Best for discretionary portfolio management in India 2022
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Best for discretionary portfolio management in India 2022

Centrum Wealth

Having its roots in a financial company with a conservative profile paid off for Centrum Wealth Management in 2021.

While the firm thrives on the entrepreneurial energy coursing through India, there’s a stick-to-the-basics code that works especially well when the global economy goes awry, says Arpita Vinay, managing director and co-head of Centrum Wealth.

This means Centrum Wealth’s commitment to institutionalized processes, checks-and-balances and de-risking held its business in good stead in the past year.

In 2021, overall assets under management rose a robust 48%, year on year. Centrum Wealth claims to have recorded one of the highest annualized insurance premium take-ups in the industry last year.

Anil Sarin, Centrum Wealth.jpg
Anil Sarin, Centrum Wealth

The firm’s strong focus on building annuity income also paid off. Mutual fund-based annuity revenue was up 65%, year on year, while annuity income overall surged 75%.

It was a similar story elsewhere too. Centrum Wealth’s asset management business showed a solid performance. Discretionary portfolio management services revenue grew 2.4 times, and the equity advisory business nearly doubled in revenue with a 75% AUM increase.

The impressive numbers of the wealth arm are in large part thanks to the broader Centrum Group’s journey these last two-plus decades.

Set up in 1997, the diversified financial group spent 14 years building up market share before opening Centrum Wealth in 2011. It started out as a “challenger brand,” as Centrum Wealth puts it, but it is no longer an underdog.

Eleven years on, Centrum Wealth seems well-positioned in terms of domain strengths, skills and capabilities across asset classes – from traditional to alternative assets. The same goes for its relationships in public and private market offerings and its ability to devise and structure products in both domestic and overseas markets.

That conservative approach has kept Centrum Wealth grounded, resisting the urge to expand overheads too quickly. Its roughly 250-strong team operates from 16 locations, including Singapore, and handles AUM equivalent to $4.5 billion. It covers a wide range of products and offerings, spanning plain vanilla equities, fixed income offerings, private and alternative assets, structured products and real estate offerings, among others.

When it comes to discretionary equity portfolio management services and non-discretionary equity advisory services, the Centrum Wealth team is gaining quite a reputation in industry circles.

As 2022 unfolds, the firm is sharpening its focus on the HNW and UHNW segments. Centrum Wealth’s suite of services extends to wealth and estate planning, citizenship and immigration planning, and taxation advisory. The firm is eyeing a bigger role in family business governance services.