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Sanctum Wealth readies growth plan after consolidating RBS India private banking biz

VC Circle, Sep 7, 2017

By Bruhadeeswaran R

Sanctum Wealth Management Pvt. Ltd aims to grow the assets its manages for clients four-fold by 2020, as the company that acquired the local private banking business of Royal Bank of Scotland charts out a plan to expand in India and overseas.

The Mumbai-based company has set a target to increase its managed assets to Rs. 20,000 crore from Rs. 5,000 crore currently and Rs. 3,700 crore at the time of the RBS deal last year, founder and CEO Shiv Gupta told VCCircle.

Sanctum has also started offering investment banking services to help clients sell assets and raise funds. It hired investment banker Sumit Pachisia from ICICI Securities in July to head the so-called strategic solutions unit that will provide such services. Pachisia has a decade of experience at ICICI Securities leading the coverage in real estate, auto ancillary, industrial and media sectors.

“We have launched our strategic solutions unit to help our entrepreneur clients with capital markets solutions in addition to the existing suite of services,” said Gupta.

Sanctum already offers bespoke products and services to people with high net worth, typically defined as those who have more than $1 million (Rs. 6.4 crore) in investable assets. Its key offerings are investment solutions, real estate services and wealth planning.

The company is seeking to tap into the rising number of affluent individuals and families in India. According to a report by market research firm New World Wealth, India had 2,64,000 people with high net worth at the end of 2016, up 12% from the previous year. The report also showed that the combined wealth of these people was $3 trillion and that wealth managers together managed $78 billion, highlighting the market potential.

Sanctum would compete with the likes of Mumbai-based Waterfield Advisors, which advises family offices and families with ultra-high net worth. Waterfield said in May it was looking to grow assets under advisory by five times to Rs. 50,000 crore in three years’ time.

Another firm Wodehouse Capital Advisors Pvt. Ltd, which began as a multifamily office managing wealth of rich clients, has expanded into investment banking and also started providing consultancy services to foreign firms planning their India entry strategy.

Gupta launched Sanctum Wealth in April 2016 with four branches and five licences for various offerings in wealth management after acquiring the Indian private banking business of Royal Bank of Scotland. Before the acquisition, he oversaw all aspects of RBS’ onshore private banking franchise in India.

Gupta was backed by a clutch of venture capital investors such as Jayesh Parekh of Jungle Ventures, Nitin Nath of Mount Nathan Advisors and Shagun Kapoor Gogia of Tuscan Ventures to take control of the new entity.

Gupta also said that about 90-95% of the clients shifted to Sanctum Wealth from RBS. Despite the initial phase seeing a period of stabilisation, Sanctum clocked about 25-30% yearly growth in assets under management and the number of clients, he added.

The company is planning to expand to Singapore, Dubai and London, among other cities outside India, Gupta said. In May, the company had hired Satwick Tandon as executive director to pursue its international strategy.

Overall, Sanctum has 80 employees and plans to grow the team to about 200 employees over the next few years, Gupta added.