Unprecedented affluence in the Indian middle class has stirred up need for wealth management – which is fast emerging as a high adrenaline career and is drawing a great many B-school graduates. With salaries now at an all time high, the wealth and disposable income of many Indians have increased considerably during the last two decades. As a result, wealth management is now regarded as a well rewarding career opportunity for many Indian university graduates, mainly those passing out of the 950-plus business schools of the country.
World Wealth Report 2005, published by Cap Gemini & Merrill Lynch states – “the number of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) in India grew by 14.6 percent, twice the global average of 7.3 percent, in 2004. Future growth in this segment is estimated at nearly 20 percent annually in the next five years”.
Modern day wealth managers take care of all-round financial services. The services comprise a wide range and include deals under assets such as equity, mutual funds, debt, insurance, and expert services like estate management besides tax advisory, succession planning etc. To bag the position of a wealth manager with a reputed bank or financial institution, one needs to have an MBA (Finance) degree from a well known management institution or a postgraduate degree in Economics. To hasten promotion it is advisable to enrol for a chartered financial analyst (CFA) programme. The Hyderabad-based Institute of Chartered Financial Analysts of India offers this course either by distance education or as a regular curriculum covering subjects like corporate finance, financial services, and investment management.
Other institutions offering similar programmes are:
Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai
SP Jain Institute of Management and Research, Mumbai
International Management Institute, New Delhi
Xavier Institute of Management, Bhubaneshwar
Today, the requirement for skilled wealth managers are greatly surpassing supply, creating an unlimited possibility for professional growth in this space. Private banks such as HDFC, ICICI and foreign banks like ABN Amro, CitiGold Wealth Management, Citibank, Deutsch Bank, B.N. Paribas, HSBC, Barclays and Société Général, with recognized private banking operations in India, and investment firms such as DSP Merrill Lynch, Kotak Securities, Anand Rathi Investments, and J.M. Morgan Stanley, are the ideal employers of aspiring wealth managers. Other potential employers include individual wealth management firms, which provide an array of services like investment advice, portfolio management, taxation advice, etc. Besides, there are the mutual fund companies, asset management and insurance units, brokerage firms, investment consultants, money management firms and trust companies.
Job responsibilities of wealth managers are very comprehensive in nature and include all the concerns that involve a customer’s present financial situation and future ambitions. Even though wealth managers may possess specified proficiency, they are expected to harmonize services, bringing together the required professionals like, lawyers, accountants, bankers, and investment advisers who provide their specialised services to create highly targeted solutions. The crux of effectual wealth management is building relationships, both with clients and with advisors and financial experts who partake in taking care of customers’ complete wealth management plan.
Following are the services offered:
Banking services (including cash management and loans)
Charitable giving planning
Risk management and asset protection (including insurance requirements and shielding wealth from liabilities)
Skilled and qualified wealth managers start with a good pay package which ranges between Rs.4–5 lakh a year. The package can go up to more than Rs.1 crore in 10 years with the job role of a senior wealth manager who deal with portfolios worth Rs.400–500 crore each.
Earlier investors never thought beyond investing in government securities, fixed deposits, and new equity issues. But now, the market is complex and many people are going for wealth management guidance. Professionals working in corporate are fast emerging as major customers as a major number of IT companies, banks etc give stock options to employees which amount to millions of rupees. Till now wealth management was limited to individuals with Rs.2–3 crore to invest. Today, even those with Rs.20–30 lakh engage wealth managers paying fees of Rs.40,000–2,00,000 annually. Wealth management is embryonic in our country and has a long way to go. The playing field is getting wider for wealth managers in the country. Now, there are options to invest even in commodities, real estate, gold, silver etc. Soon we will be authorized to invest globally in a number of countries. Managing wealth is going to get more complex and the requirement for wealth managers will rocket.
Armed with the awareness of the enormous potentials in this lately discovered field, many young aspirants are gearing up to initiate their own one-stop shops providing a wide range of wealth management services. The country being placed at the threshold of flight, more and more asset management companies are expected to be launched.