Career in Finance has always been the buzzword in MBA colleges. Everybody wants it. Period. But students don’t know how to achieve it. Paramdeep Singh, Atul Kumar, Pawan Prabhat and Sarita Chand gave up their cushy jobs to start Pristine with the aim of being the center of the financial training eco-system. Pristine, formed by professionals from IITs and IIMs, has “been there and done that” and YourStory brings to you their journey and their perspective on what it takes to get there?Please tell us more about Pristine
Pristine started in 2007 with a vision of creating world class professionals especially in the area of finance, with a focus on investment banking and risk management.
Pristine has been profitable since its inception owing to strong demand of quality training for international certifications in finance. Pristine is a pioneer in trainings in India for international certifications like FRM, PRM, CFA, CFP and industry oriented courses like financial modeling in Excel, etc. Pristine is now one of the largest authorized training providers in India and has a significant presence across the world (through its unique online offering).
Please explain about FRM, CFA etc.
CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst), FRM (Financial Risk Manager), PRM (Professional Risk Manager) are some of the most prestigious international certifications in the area of finance. These certifications are conducted by independent organizations and are recognized as certifications of excellence in the area of corporate finance, risk management, quantitative analysis, etc.
Apart from clearing the exam, to get the charters you need to have relevant work experience. One gets a definite career boost in the field of finance, if one clears the certification.
How does Pristine help the students and the participants in building a better career prospects?
Pristine helps the students get industry perspective by employing trainers, who are working professionals. It also conducts industry oriented courses like financial modeling in Excel for educational institutions and participants in open batches. Pristine has been conducting free workshops on career counseling, resume building, case study solving, GD for colleges and is now tying up with placement partner to ensure the right job opportunities for the participants.
What separates Pristine from other players in this sector?
Pristine has been focusing on student success in all aspects by:
- Having a strong focus on Intellectual property and has its own material
- Bringing innovations in the education market by creating products like visualizeFRM (Summarized formula and concept charts), summarized recordings (for revision) and online synchronous classes (for added convenience of students)
- Employing the Topic Expert model – It has the largest network of professionals (350+), who provide participants with practical perspective on various subjects
- Using world class methodologies like Excel Models, content and training that is very time effective
What other growth areas are you targeting?
We have found that there is a gap in industry requirements and the curriculum that students are studying. Pristine is planning to launch placement oriented programs aimed at helping college graduates reach the desired job profile. An important area of the training would be counseling the students for the right job. Pristine would also be working with a placement partner to ensure the right opportunities for the students.
Pristine is also working with colleges authorities to provide industry perspective to education.
So who have been your clients?
Pristine has been associated with some of the most reputed corporate clients and educational institutions. Pristine has worked with NISM (educational body promoted by SEBI), HSBC, Mizuho Bank etc.
Pristine has also trained students of IIM Calcutta, BITS Pilani, SIMSREE, Welingkar in the area of financial modeling in excel, corporate finance, risk management, etc.
Where do you see yourself 3-4 years hence?
Our goal is clear – we want to be the largest and most affordable training provider for high end courses like FRM, PRM, CFA, financial modeling in Excel and CFP across the world. We also want to work with at least 200 educational institutions (to enhance job prospects of students).
How did you decide to be an entrepreneur and why did you choose education as a field?
While working, we always used to discuss the freedom to decide your own path in own startups. We wanted to define your own destiny and bridge the gap in employability market by using latent teaching capability of professionals.
Since all of us had experience in finance and consulting so we thought of starting with this area. Of course education is one of the fastest growing industries across the world today and we could feel and see the opportunities in this area.
What would you say to aspiring entrepreneurs to prepare them for the real world?
When you start your company, in the initial years, there are going to be teething troubles. You need to have someone to fall back to. For this a good and committed team is a must! In my view, this is the most important factor in success of organizations.
After you decide that you want to do it, don’t stop. Take the plunge!