This was the ethos under which Karan R Kapadia and Shank K Vasudev put the idea of PHUNDO into execution, launching this simple goal based platform on 13 April 2018 in front of an audience of over 70 people in Bangalore - India's startup HUB.
Karan opened the event with a crisp presentation on the journey of Phundo, from idea-to-execution. Speaking to an audience of Bangalore's Independent Financial Advisors, Industry experts and investors Karan said "The success is not in adopting technology but transcending it to millions in a simple, uncomplicated and convenient way was the biggest challenge we had to overcome".
K N Sivasubramanian formally Head Equities for India's first mutual fund house Kothari Pioneer and CIO Franklin Equity Group speaking at this occasion brought back memories of his investment philosophy. "Mutual Fund is a simple product and I am happy that Phundo has worked to present investing in mutual funds as a simple proposition using algorithms which takes out the human bias." Siva, as he is fondly referred to, pioneered the way forward in investing in mutual funds with products that are today household names in the country.
An interesting off beat talk by a veteran in the private wealth onshore and offshore business grabbed eyeball attention. "Where is private wealth in its true sense now ? Private wealth is about building goal based portfolios for clients to achieve their financial goals. Instead, private wealth outfits are now pushing products such as real estate and providing loans as opposed to helping investors to grow their wealth overtime" says Nikhil Kapadia formally Head of Avendus Private Wealth, MD Deutsche Bank and Head of DSP Merrill Lynch Private wealth. He had a message for the AMCs and IFAs which was to
"embrace technology to reduce costs and improve credibility and transparency in the advisory space."
In the course of the evening, Phundo demonstrated the capability of helping investors to break down the myths and barriers to investing in mutual funds. Through its tie-up with the Mutual funds Sahi Hai Campaign and AMCs, Phundo has invested in building a learning centre on its website, currently under development, for investors to access. Short videos help a better understanding of mutual funds as a regular savings alternative.
The journey of Phundo began with bringing together the power of the 4Ps - Purpose, People, Passion, Persistence. Sudeep Srikantaswamy - Head Investment Services O3 Securities, was witness to the start of this journey by the Phundo team.
"I tested the beta and alpha version and knew these guys hit the jackpot with its simplicity and convenience."For Phundo to get feedback and advise from Sudeep was invaluable.
The Phundo team was encouraged to witness Santosh Kamath - MD & CIO Franklin Templeton Fixed Income engaging with the audience. Santosh is known for his contra play in his business which has gained respect of a wide section of the investing community.
"There is always a perception that mutual funds are complex products. The fact is, if you want to make money you need to take risk and there is no two ways but for you to invest in equity and fixed income. What better way to do this but through mutual funds."The conviction and commitment shown by all the speakers at this event enthused the audience to look at Phundo's way of investing - Select, Invest, Relax. The soft launch on 8 March 2018 to test the system with their friends and family gave real time feedback for implementation. With 78 active clients acquired till date the Phundo team continues to enhance the customer experience and delight. Santosh Kamath echoed this view
"I will encourage Phundo to continue to innovate as this will be the competitive edge in the future."Having successfully incorporate three payment options - e-Mandate, i-direct debit, p-Mandate - Innovation is the corner stone of what Phundo strives to achieve.
The event would not have been complete without the vote of thanks given by
Balaji Rao DG known as the Black Box!. The evening concluded with some delightful interactions with the audience, encouraging comments of support from well wishers and potential business alliances for the future. The hard work put in by the team working tirelessly from their small quaint office in Bangalore has helped forge alliances in a cost efficient manner.
The Phundo Fintech team that developed Phundo.com.
The meeting of two great fund managers - K N Sivasubramanian formally CIO Franklin Equity (left)& Santosh Kamath MD & CIO Franklin Fixed Income Group (right)
The audience, consisting of industry experts, Independent Financial Advisors, AMC representatives and investors at the launch of Phundo Fintech.