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  • Writer's pictureTeam Carnelian

Carnelian Update - Don’t only believe us…

Updated: Jan 10, 2022

Greetings from Team Carnelian.

In our last few newsletters, we have discussed a few megatrends which we believe will pan out over the next few years. These structural trends further received an impetus in the recently announced historic budget wherein the Finance Minister kick started the investment cycle and implemented various measures facilitating the private sector’s participation in India’s journey towards a USD 5tn economy. India is also embarking upon a journey of becoming a CAD surplus country which will have a far-reaching structural impact on the interest rate structure and growth profile. We are of a firm belief that India will see a broad-based equity bull market over the next 5 years, which will surprise most people. We have been highlighting this in our newsletters over the last 4 months (Jan-21, Dec-20, Nov-20, to read our earlier newsletter, click here)

But don’t ONLY believe us. We want you to listen to this from India Inc’s stalwarts who have been known for their outright views on the state of affairs and we consider them unbiased.

Our recent interactions with many CEOs reiterate our belief that capex and digital is the main agenda in all board room meetings while global CEOs discuss China+1 strategy. The optimism of India Inc’s CEOs to participate in the unprecedented growth opportunity across digital, manufacturing and financial sectors is boosting our conviction too.

Some of the key takeaways from our interaction with industry stalwarts are reproduced below:

Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla - Chairman, Aditya Birla Group

  • Expect India to witness a steep jump in growth led by thrust on infrastructure, housing and industrial capex fuelled by government focus on manufacturing in India.

  • India has become a leading hub of start-ups

  • India’s working population to dependent population ratio is the best in the world, similar to that of Japan in 60s, Korea in 80s and China in 90s. This could be India’s decade.

  • Expect a multifold jump in formalization and financialization of economy.

  • To ride on the India story, The Aditya Birla group has stepped up its capex plan and announced a USD 2.5bn capex over last few months across cement, paints, metals.

Mr. Uday Kotak - MD & CEO, Kotak Mahindra Bank

Foresee a big opportunity for India transforming from the world’s back office to world’s front office.

  • Budget was a defining moment for the private sector and policy wind of with India.

  • Digital is no more optional and Kotak leadership has been given a mandate to complete the next 5 years digital agenda now at a great speed.

  • More & more sectors are becoming lendable.

  • Expects large opportunities emerging out of formalization and industry consolidation.

  • 8-10% real growth is achievable now.

Mr. N Chandrasekhran – Chairman, Tata Sons

  • The Indian economy is in a very exciting phase supported by conducive policies.

  • Pandemic in a way has been good and has given acceleration of a decade. This change is irreversible now.

  • Many people have written off IT sectors many time in the past. I am very very bullish on the potential of the sector.

  • Tata group focus will be on digital transformation for each of its companies.

  • The group is looking to make large ticket investments in electronics, renewables, power generation (Tata Power), Lithium Batteries (Tata Chemicals), EV (Tata Motors), consumer business (super-app)

Mr. Mukesh Ambani – Chairman & MD, Reliance Industries

  • The Indian economy will not only bounce back but will also grow with unprecedented acceleration. India can and India will prove cynics wrong by becoming a USD 5 tn economy.

  • It will be a More Equal India with increased incomes, increased employment, and improved quality of life for 1 billion Indians at the middle and bottom of the economic pyramid.

  • In the next two decades, India will grow to be among the top three economies in the world. More importantly, it will become a premier digital society, with young people driving it. Per capita income will go from USD 1,800 - 2,000 per capita to USD 5,000 per capita.

Mr. Nandan M. Nilekani - Co-founder & Chairman, Infosys

  • Never seen this kind of opportunity ever over the last 40 years in my career.

  • Only 5% of cloud migration has happened till now – multi year journey is still left.

  • Digital strategy is the most important ingredient in the corporate board room. Expect big digital transformation opportunity in financial, healthcare, education & logistics.

  • Digital credit will drive big part of credit growth going forward.

  • WFH (work from home) will significantly increase productivity and employability.

Mr. Dinesh Kumar Khara – Chairman, SBI

  • Housing loan to be a growth driver. Expect housing demand to sustain - the new age is buying houses at a much lower age.

  • Expect good uptick in private sector capex by FY22 end which is likely to accelerate credit growth currently driven mainly by public sector capex.

Mr. S N Subrahmanyan - CEO and MD, L&T

  • L&T NxT – connecting machines and humans with AI and digital solutions has resulted in improving efficiency across projects.

  • Very optimistic on growth. L&T has the largest ever order backlog and pipeline discussions. Private capex is showing green shoots.

Mr. C Vijaykumar - President & CEO, HCL Tech

  • There is at least a trillion dollars of incremental spend in the next 4-5 years. India should get at least a 20% share, which means USD 200 bn growth over the next five years which would potentially double the industry.

  • Software products is the largest profit pool in the tech sector and is an untapped opportunity for the Indian heritage companies and there's a lot of potential there

Mr. Thierry Delaporte – CEO & MD, Wipro

  • India has the most exceptional pool of talent in the entire world. This is the mother country of technology in the world.

Mr. Pirojsha Godrej – Executive Chairman, Godrej Properties

  • Affordability in residential real estate is at all time best

  • Pandemic has had a sharp positive impact on customer’s desire for home ownership

  • Upcoming supply is at very low levels

  • Prices may rise ~ 20% over 3-4 years

  • Consolidation will continue for next couple of years

Dr. Pawan Munjal - Chairman, MD & CEO, Hero Motocorp

  • The silver lining in this pandemic is the Honorable Prime Minister's clarion call and push for an Aatmanirbhar Bharat

  • The auto sector can be the growth engine for bringing it alive by connecting, communicating and collaborating on multiple fronts such as innovation, engineering and R&D

  • India's biggest advantage and key asset is its unique position of having the world's largest youth population

Mr. Rajendra Gogri - Chairman & MD, Aarti Industries

  • Indian Chemical industry is entering a golden phase. India's rapid emergence as a leading supplier of chemical intermediates is likely to increase the country's share in the global market

  • Witnessing various growth opportunities flowing into for Indian pharma manufacturing from a global standpoint, which is also well supported by the government's Aatma Nirbhar initiatives.

Mr. P Nataraj – MD, K.P.R. Mills

  • The Indian Apparel Sector with the history of fine craftsmanship and global appeal has emerged as the most preferred destination for International brands.

  • The strong raw material base and availability of skilled labour carries huge opportunities for Indian Textile players.

  • Current market situation and global scenario gives lot of opportunities favoring the Indian Garment sector.

McKinsey & Company ‘s report – The Indian chemical industries: Unleashing the next wave of growth – Feb 2020

  • Trade conflicts have led to shifts in global supply chains and present opportunities for the Indian chemical companies.

  • China’s share in agrochemicals, dyes & pigments and intermediates for APIs @ 11-17% and is 2.7x of the India’s exports which is at 4-5%. India already has a strong base in these segments and could take a greater share of the pie, both by penetrating deeper in already-served segments and by serving new segments.

  • Other segments such as plastic additives, flavours & fragrances, rubber chemicals, etc. where China is 12x of India’s share in exports (China – USD 15 bn vs India – USD 1.3 bn), present export opportunities for Indian chemical companies to explore along with building capacities to serve domestic demand.

We are well aware of the prevalent widespread skepticism around the sustainability of economic recovery and wealth creation potential of the markets.

We will continue to build through our research and connect the dots of the puzzle. From our prism when we look at this jigsaw puzzle, we are seeing a double digit growth, USD 5 tn GDP, USD 5-6 tn Market capitalization and a very wide spread growth spanning across services, manufacturing and exports across multiple sectors.

Multiple times in our career we have seen people who miss early part of the cycle end up panic buying in the late stage of the cycle. Early part will always delivers better returns. It’s our duty to convince you and show you the potential through our work.

How have we positioned our portfolio to capture the above-mentioned themes?

We spend utmost focus on quality, sustainability and adaptability of corporates and managements to the emerging trends while choosing our portfolio stocks. Team Carnelian will continue to focus on our approach of investing in companies which are in the midst of a big trend provided it meets our quality criterion. Only when both meet, magic happens. All our investments will continue to go through the stringent MFRG and CLEAR framework before making debut to our portfolio. Our portfolio constantly reflects these trends.

We have positioned our portfolio (Carnelian Compounder strategy and The Shift Strategy) to capture wealth creation opportunity across mega trends mentioned above.

We will be more than glad to discuss more should you want.

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