Ampersand Capital

Funds managed

Fund nameAsset ClassLicense
Ampersand Capital TrustHedge fund – Long Only SEBI AIF Cat 3
  • The name of the fund as mentioned in Company website – Ampersand Growth Opportunities Fund Scheme –I
  • Ampersand Capital Trust is named as per SEBI registration

About the AMC

  • Ampersand is a collaborative effort by a team of experienced and highly rated equity research professionals aimed at enhancing wealth for its clients through investments in Indian equities.
  • Ampersand is the Investment Manager to the Ampersand Growth Opportunities Fund Scheme – I (AGOFS), a Category III Alternative Investment Fund (AIF) registered with SEBI. AGOFS is an open ended scheme which started in September 2017.
  • AGOFS seeks to deliver superior returns by identifying high conviction ideas, which has potential to expand earnings and thereby valuations. AGOFS follows a multi cap strategy with concentrated portfolio of over 60% of investible corpus in Top 10 stock holdings.
  • Key Staff:
  1. ARUN SUBRAHMANYAM (FOUNDER AND PARTNER) – Arun has over 25 years of professional experience in equity research across domestic and international brokerage firms. After graduating from St. Stephens College, New Delhi, Arun qualified as a Chartered Accountant. His professional career started with ICICI, followed by stints with HSBC Securities, Paribas Capital Markets and IDFC-SSKI Securities. His last employment was as Managing Director – Research at BofA–Merrill Lynch where he worked for 11 years before founding Ampersand.
  2. SANJAYA SATAPATHY (PORTFOLIO MANAGER) – Sanjaya has over 16 years of experience in fundamental research across multiple sectors. He has won the best mid-cap sector analyst award from Institutional Investors and stock picker award from Starmine while working at Bank of America Merrill Lynch and his professional career include stints at HSBC Securities and ABN Amro Equities.

Sanjaya has done his B.E. (Electrical) from UCE Burla, and MBA from XIM Bhubaneswar. He started his professional career in equity research with First Global in 1999. Prior to joining Ampersand, Sanjaya held the position of Vice President in equity research at Bank of America Merrill Lynch till Sept 2016.

Investment Philosophy (for firm) 

Summary – Sector Agnostic, Long Only, Bottom-up, Growth approach

As per the company’website – 

  • We believe that wealth creation in equity market is driven by (1) timing of upswing in business cycles and (2) identifying companies with superior capital allocation skills.
  • What investment objectives do we pursue?

Our objective is to meaningfully and consistently outperform broad equity market benchmark i.e. BSE 500. We also aim to minimize downside risks and volatility of portfolio, while targeting superior returns.

  • How do we aim to achieve these objectives?
  • Identify sectors on cusp of profit up-cycle, driven by (1) stronger demand growth relative to supply (2) industry consolidation (3) favorable regulatory changes, and (4) change in consumer preferences.
  • Focus on companies with improving competitive advantage and long term potential, supported by proven track record.
  • Assessing valuation re-rating potential, thereby offering favorable outcomes from risk-reward perspective.
  • High conviction demonstrated by concentrated sector and stock specific portfolio, backed by in-depth research.
  • Key Challenges

(i) What is in the price, (ii) what is level of optimism/ pessimism embedded in the consensus view and lastly (iii) can we take a stance different from the consensus

  • What is the investment process we follow?

Ideation and screening is driven by brainstorming within the team members, backed by research rigor and initial understanding of the underlying businesses. This is followed by analysis of publicly available information as well as interaction with the respective company managements. More often than not, we meet multiple companies in the same sector to form a view and zero in on a particular investment idea. At the roots, we are research analysts and like to get our hands dirty and make our own spreadsheet which then culminates in a concrete stock view.

  • Ampersand Capital Trust is an AMC and has a ‘Growth Opportunities Fund Scheme’ which is an Open ended fund launched in September 2017, a CAT-3 Long only fund – Source – Performance Analysis in PMS Bazaar website, Link – https://pmsbazaar.com/Visitor/AIFComparison

Media

  1. Title – KEI Industries raises Rs 500 crore via QIP, ET, Jan 28, 2020

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets/stocks/news/kei-industries-raises-rs-500-crore-via-qip/articleshow/73704303.cms?from=mdr

Summary – KEI Industries was one of the holdings in the portfolio that they sold and this news was there in the quarterly newsletter of Ampersand Capital so I just checked for information.

  1. Title – Hope Floats – December 2019 Newsletter, company website

https://ampersand-cap.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Hope%20Floats%20-%20Dec%202019.pdf

Summary – The newsletter starts with reasoning for the underperformance of portfolio vs. benchmark BSE 500. As on Dec 15, 2019 portfolio consists of 32 stocks (up from 30) and investible cash surplus of 9% around (similar to previous quarter).

The portfolio was rebalanced and reconstituted resulting in higher churn rate. A brief discussion about sectors added/removed is followed.

  1. Title – Something’s gotta give – September 2019 Newsletter, company website

https://ampersand-cap.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Something’s%20gotta%20give%20-%20Sept%202019.pdf

Summary – AIF portfolio comprises 30 stocks and our investible cash surplus stood at 8.2% (down from ~18% in the previous quarter).

I think they are talking about the fund performance and a discussion on sector impacted by some reforms.

  1. Title – Ampersand Capital is all Positive on IT and Consumption | Trading Hour | CNBC TV18, YouTube, Jul 11, 2018

https://youtu.be/Vxrb3pn5CGQ

            Summary – Mostly discussion is on short term impacts of some regulatory changes    (GST, Sugar Cess, politics) Rahul Singh, managing partner, Ampersand Capital, has advised   investors to bet on consumption and IT saying that the two would be the “pillars for any   investment portfolio this year”.

  1. Title – In 3-6 months, portfolio shift towards PSU banks will get over: Rahul Singh, Ampersand, ET article, Nov 02, 2017

https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/markets/expert-view/in-3-6-months-portfolio-shift-towards-psu-banks-will-get-over-rahul-singh-ampersand/articleshow/61437764.cms

Summary – This article I found on the website so checked but I think it is mostly short term discussion.

  1. Title- Prefer bottom-up stock picking; avoid DLF: Ampersand Capital, Moneycontrol, Mar 03 2017

https://www.moneycontrol.com/news/tags/ampersand-capital-investment-advisors-llp.html

Summary – In an interview to CNBC-TV18, Rahul Singh of Ampersand Capital Investment Advisors LLP talked about how the house had a ‘sector-agnostic’ market approach and preferred ‘bottom-up’ stock picking. 

Something relevant – He said we have a pretty sector agnostic approach and we try to find bottom-up picks even in sectors which are not doing well.

  1. Title – Time to Reboot – Sep 2017 Newsletter

http://rashifincorp.com/newsletter/Time%20to%20Reboot%20-%20Sep%202017.pdf

Summary – Talking about the correction in the market in different sectors impacted by some short term thing in 2017.

Something relevant I found in the newsletter – we will continue to follow our investment philosophy of identifying exciting growth opportunities with sustainable long-term potential.

There are more Articles and Interviews of Rahul Singh (Now working as CIO- Tata Mutual Fund) Earlier was managing partner (Aug 2015- Sept 2018) with Ampersand but are older so I didn’t bother to watch all of them. Here is the link – http://www.moneycontrol.com/elite/profile/rahul-singh_1513.html

Analyst questions

  1. It seems you follow “Long only” hedge fund strategy (Source – PMS Bazaar website AIF performance- https://pmsbazaar.com/Visitor/AIFComparison), a traditional strategy in the Hedge fund. The primary source of risk is equity oriented risk in such strategies, how do you minimize downside risks and volatility of portfolio?
  2. As you mentioned in Investment Philosophy, Wealth creation in Indian Equity is driven by identifying companies with superior capital allocation skills. What according to you is the optimal debt-equity mix for a company?
  3. What do you think of a company that uses its capital for Mergers or Acquisitions?
  4. What risk adjusted performance measures like Sharpe Ratio, Sortino Ratio you consider to analyze the performance of your portfolio?
  5. As per the last quarter, you have an investible cash surplus of about 9% similar to the previous quarter (8.2%), do you always keep some percentage in cash for the long term or is it because of lack of profitable opportunities? Do you think it impacts your Alpha?

Prepared by – Sonal Narwani

Reviewed by – Shivani Kadam (7th May 2020).

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