With SIPs becoming popular, distributors are setting new records. In the latest example, Ankit Chopra and C.J. Gopinath have initiated 651 and 322 SIPs on behalf of their clients in equity funds in a single day.
Read on to know how these IFAs have set an example of ‘Plan Big and Think Bold’.
Initial journey - Gopinath
From the time he was in college, S. Gopinath was keen on becoming a financial advisor. In 1989, immediately after completing his education, he started assisting his uncle in the stock brokerage business. After learning the ropes of the business from his uncle, he started on his own in 1995.
However, the 2008 financial crisis made him realise the need to expand his business beyond stock broking. Thus, after completing CFP in 2011, he launched Manifest, a financial advisory firm, along with Jayesh Doshi, who was also a broker.
Initial journey - Ankit
Ankit’s story is a little different. After becoming a Chartered Accountant (CA), he joined his family stock broking business. Though his father Om Prakash Chopra took an ARN in 2008, he did not renew it. Only after his clients demanded tax saving instruments such as ELSS, did Ankit take up an ARN for mutual fund distribution in March 2017 and start his own advisory firm, Funds Mitra along with his brother Ankur Chopra and father.
‘SIP’ a day initiative
Inspired by the sales drive of e-commerce companies such as Big Billion Day, Gopinath decided to run a similar campaign for SIPs. The aim was to inculcate the discipline of regular saving amongst his clients through SIPs. It so happened that world environment day (June 5) was round the corner, so the duo redesigned the initiative to call it ‘SIP for Sapling’. He said, “Since world environment day was round the corner, we decided to make that the theme of our initiative. We bought saplings from growtree.com, a non-profit organisation at Rs.85 apiece. This company grows and takes care of saplings on behalf of people across the country and issues certificates. People can see their saplings growing online.”
The duo felicitated every client registering for an SIP with a sapling and a certificate in collaboration with growtree.com. During the two-day campaign on June 4 and 5, they processed 322 SIPs, amounting close to Rs.11 lakh. Over 90% of these SIPs were in equity funds. The average ticket size was Rs.3,350.
Sharing how they conceived this SIP drive, Gopinath said, “We first looked at the portfolio of our existing 450 clients to understand if they needed SIPs to achieve their financial goals. Also, we factored in the impact of implementation of long-term capital gains tax on equity funds due to which the post-tax return from their equity funds would decline. Of course, a few clients needed to top up their investments to reduce the impact of LTCG on equity funds so that their long-term financial goals remained intact. We shortlisted close to 150 clients and conveyed to them that they had to start SIPs to achieve their financial goals. Almost 105 of them agreed and we got another 14 clients through referrals.”
Ankit was inspired by a Cafemutual article on Prakash Hegde. (Click here to read the story) Recalling this, Ankit said, “I have been reading Cafemutual to get my daily dose of news and inspiration. My day starts with Cafemutual. The idea of SIP day came to my mind when I read how Prakash Hegde initiated 301 SIPs in a day. After reading the story, I approached Prakash to understand how he did it. Inspired, I asked my father that why we can’t we do it too. My father was sceptical initially particularly about operational burden, but thanks to BSE Star MF, we were able to manage it smoothly.”
Ankit further said, “Most of our clients invest in ELSS at the end of the financial year to save taxes. We approached 150 clients and told them to invest in ELSS through SIPs to get the benefits of rupee cost averaging. We also told them to stagger their equity investments in monthly instalment through SIP to ride out the volatility. As a result, over 125 clients agreed to start SIPs with us. We have initiated 650 SIPs amounting Rs.17 lakh, all in equity funds. The average ticket size is Rs.2,500.”
Ankit shared that his team worked until 2.30 am the day before SIP day i.e. June 8, 2018.