[The Turning Point] What prompted this entrepreneur to start a fintech startup

The Turning Point is a series of short articles that focuses on the moment when an entrepreneur hit upon their winning idea. Today, we look at Bengaluru-based online financial advisory Capital Quotient.

Sousthav Chakrabarty comes from a banking and wealth management background. Having worked with reputed Indian and foreign banks for almost a decade, he has witnessed several changes in the industry.

The idea to start something new came in 2007 after he observed lacunae in the banking and wealth management ecosystem.

It was a time when wealth management implied cross-selling of mainly insurance products that were expensive and required high maintenance, Sausthav says. This was a win for insurance companies and distributors, but not for end customers.

During 2007, he had a few CXO-level clients and one of them reached out for advice to consolidate his investment portfolio. He started sharing a lot of data related to real estate, gold, PF, investments in other banks, and so on.

In a week, Sousthav prepared a spreadsheet that consolidated the client’s entire net worth in one place. The latter then connected Sausthav to other senior leaders from his company for the same service

Sousthav Chakrabarty (CEO), Anil Bhat (CTO) and Gautam Reddy (COO)

“As a young person starting out, I did this to create goodwill and improve business relations. These clients then suggested I should look at starting a firm offering this as the core service,” Sousthav recalls.

During that time, technology was not common or so widely used. Manually collating large financial data into one space was a major challenge. It was time consuming and non-scalable.

By 2016, Gautam Reddy and Anil Bhat, two consultants who Sousthav had met earlier through various business interactions, decided to integrate technology and set up a financial advisory firm.

“Around the same time, I realised that I was doing a disservice to my customers and quit my corporate journey. And, the idea to offer a pure advisory service instead of focusing on the distribution of products was born. Capital Quotient was started with an objective to provide clear, unbiased, and real-time financial advice to people” Sausthav adds.

Gautam joined as the Co-founder and COO of Capital Quotient, while Anil became the CTO of the company.

A one-stop solution

Capital Quotient is a SEBI-registered investment advisory firm that functions as a one-stop solution for financial planning, investment tracking, real-time advice, and execution services. The fintech startup claims to have fulfilled the financial aspirations of more than 30,500 clients till now.

“India has broadly been a market where customers were used to free advice, or did not appreciate advice when it came at a cost. Bankers, agents, and wealth managers had till now never charged for advice, and this was a concept people were not familiar with,” he says.

“In 2007, the pervasiveness of technology in the financial domain was still very nascent. However, by 2016, technology had progressed. It seemed right to approach the tech-enabled, non-distribution-based wealth advisory space in 2016,” says Sousthav, CEO and Director, Capital Quotient.

The company now claims to have assets worth more than Rs 400 crore under direct management and supervises assets worth more than Rs 3,800 crore.

Some of the tailored solutions that the startup offers are unbiased advisory, multi-asset consolidation, significant cost saving, and uniquely crafted portfolios.

Going ahead, the company plans to be a full-service fintech platform with built-in loans, savings products, forex, and payment solutions.

Edited by Teja Lele Desai


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