[TechSparks 2020] Gaurav Rastogi of Kuvera.in on digital investments in the new normal
Investors are always wary and cautious about their investments. And when it comes to offline investment, most often agents/ intermediaries end up selling wrong policies just to get higher commission. However, offline mis-selling has not morphed into the digital realm, said Gaurav Rastogi, Founder and CEO of Kuvera.in, at TechSparks 2020.
Speaking about what made him start online mutual fund platform Kuvera.in, he said, “People’s relationship with money is very complex. Finance should be based on trust and transparency, and we felt online space is the best to do this.”
The post pandemic world has also changed everything as people are increasingly taking to apps to avail information on their savings and returns.
Gaurav told YourStory that investing in the new normal has given impetus to people trusting digital channels to find their investment strategy.
“At Kuvera, we think of ourselves as an anti-sales platform. In the offline world, agents sell you greed, fear, and complexity. The difference between the online and offline model is that in the latter, you cannot check the sanctity of the advice. In the online model, every advice is vetted by thousands of users, which makes it an ecosystem," said Gaurav.
Vishal Krishna, Business Editor of YourStory in a conversation with Gaurav Rastogi, Founder of Kuvera.in
The current generation is experimenting with investments and they are using transaction apps. However, they have to see whether the investment products they are buying is changing their lives and has a good outcome. Unfortunately, investing apps have gone on the way of increasing volumes.
“If people buy a mutual fund that results in a better outcome, then it is a victory for me,”said Gaurav.
Gaurav also spoke about how COVID-19 required them to communicate constantly with investors. The company, through its newsletter, told people to sell debt and buy equities because prices of the equities were falling. Over the last two months, they also asked people to balance their portfolio by buying some debt.
“We have seen a lot of our users follow our advice. You know the investor needs these tools to remove the complexity in investing. The more decision making paradigms you follow, it’s going to be a disaster."
"We offer to help people with their goals. If they come to us and ask how to plan for retirement, we advise them to focus on their job and work at getting a raise every year. That raise should be invested in savings for retirement. If you make an amateur effort to investing your retirement savings then you are not going to get massive returns because you are not a professional who spends an entire lifetime tracking the markets, and these professionals have an information arbitrage over you. Grapevine does not help you save money and you end up losing it," said Gaurav.
Gaurav also highlighted how digital investing is growing in smaller towns. Steel towns like Ranchi, Bhilai and Bokaro have seen people flocking to Kuvera for investing during the COVID-19. While their earnings have come down, their savings have increased because expenses have gone down for everyone during the pandemic.
“People are not spending and therefore have the money to put money in financial products. This is a global phenomenon. Will this continue is the big question,” said Gaurav.
TechSparks - YourStory's annual flagship event - has been India's largest and most important technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship summit for over a decade, bringing together entrepreneurs, policymakers, technologists, investors, mentors, and business leaders for stories, conversations, collaborations, and connections that matter. As TechSparks 2020 goes all virtual and global in its 11th edition, we want to thank you for the tremendous support we've received from all of you throughout our journey and give a huge shoutout to our sponsors of TechSparks 2020.