Nilesh S. Bajaj: Orchestrating Ever-Augmenting All-Weather Wealth Management Solutions

Nilesh S. Bajaj
Nilesh S. Bajaj

For all of our lifetime, our wealth must be like an ocean. Oceans endure storms, tidal shifts, and the ever-changing climate. This resilience reflects the importance of adaptability and growth in building real wealth. Like the constantly moving tides, our wealth should be dynamic and ever-flowing, constantly expanding and enriching our lives through all its weathers.

Nilesh S. Bajaj, the Founder says, “Similarly, based on this philosophy, at Cedrus Consultants Pvt. Ltd.we aim to provide our investors an ‘All weather Investment’ advice suited for all market cycles.

With a vision ‘To be ideal wealth managers who help investors achieve financial well-being by proactively anticipating and understanding their financial and investment issues.”

a mission of ‘Partnering with clients to enhance their wealth and achieve financial goals by orchestrating differential strategies and offering them uncomplicated solutions,’

and core values of “To stand true to our word and endeavor to present customers with simple solutions that will help them achieve their financial goals, Cedrus Consultants symbolizes the most trustworthy qualities of

ResilienceStrengthLongevity, and Beneficence

Sharing their inception story, Nilesh says that the idea called Cedrus was born way back in 2007 when he left his lucrative job in an MNC bank to incorporate a solutions-oriented investment advisory profession unheard in those days. In those days, investment products were sold more than recommended based on investors’ needs and requirements, which led to rampant mis selling by intermediaries. Investors were provided transaction-based advice as and when funds were available. There was no holistic advisory concept whereby one proactively engaged with the investor and understood his needs, requirements, and risk-taking ability.

This is where Cedrus is making all the difference. “Today, we offer financial planning and Wealth Management Solutions to more than 900 families collectively managing upward of ₹2500 crores of Assets under advisory. We are also SEBI Registered Investment Advisors providing pure fee-only advice,” informs Nilesh.

There is an ethically strong guiding philosophy behind Cedrus’s continuous success as one of the best investment management companies. Stating it, Nilesh says, “I strongly believe that values determine the success of any organization, and we have some guiding principles which we will never bypass even at the cost of business.”

Investor First Principles

At Cedrus, Nilesh ensures they completely believe in the ‘Investor First’ philosophy, “Which puts our investors’ success before our success. We strongly engage with our investors and want to participate with them in their wealth creation journey for generations, which we call the ‘Cradle to grave’ approach,” he adds. They have some investment values like the ‘All Weather Investments’ and ‘Principal Protection‘ philosophies, whereby they provide advice on investments resilient to market movements. They are stable portfolios and endeavor to protect investors’ wealth by not taking undue risks. “These are some of the guiding philosophies that have not only made us successful but also helped our investors to create more sustainable wealth,” claims Nilesh.

The investment management landscape is continually evolving. To cope with it, Nilesh says that when they started with a clear solution-based advisory approach, it was unheard of and way ahead of time. Even today, they have continuously adapted to continuous regulatory changes and thrived. They constantly study new ideas and products and how they can add value to investors. Their solution-based strategies have ensured that investors have always invested in instruments that would help them achieve their financial goals. Digitization has enabled them and thrown new challenges, which they have adapted by providing paperless transactions, a touch-of-the-click reporting of reports to investors, and regular engagement in online or in-person periodic reviews. “This has added stickiness to our investors and has given us many new investors through referrals,” mentions Nilesh, whose leadership style is recognized as a driving force behind Cedrus’ achievements.

The Participative Leadership  

Shedding light on his approach, he says that they at Cedrus always believe in transparency, and that is what they practice by having an open office culture where ideas and creativity thrive. “We have a young team that provides us with much flexibility in adopting new technologies and regulations,” adds Nilesh, who has a participative style of leadership that has provided a free flow of information and feedback amongst employees.

The essence of investment management lies in seamless operations and enhancing the business ecosystem and industrial efficiency. Thus, according to Nilesh, operations are the backbone of this industry. They have always upgraded systems in line with new regulations and changes in the government’s operational guidelines. An investor requires regular updates, convenience, and hassle-free transactions. They have built a robust system that provides a seamless experience to investors in their transaction, reporting, and engagement requirements.

Further, in the realm of investment management, technology plays a pivotal role in enhancing efficiency. Nilesh accepts that technology has been a major disruptor, and any player who hasn’t embraced technology hasn’t grown at par with the industry. “We at Cedrus believe that technology can enhance our engagement with investors and give investors real-time investment updates at the click of a button. We actively have virtual meetings with our investors, which have made engagement more efficient,” he states. The Cedrus App provides real-time updates on their portfolios and markets. Paperless and convenient transactions are possible with a best-in-class technology platform, which helps individuals to transact from any part of the globe.

A Team Touching Hearts

Also, Cedrus has a young and vibrant work culture. Nilesh insists they do not believe that only formal education can help individuals excel in their careers. “We have regular training and skill development workshops to ensure employees are ahead of the curve. Our flat organization has an open-door culture, fostering employee creativity. We have an employee stock option scheme for our core resources who are now stakeholders, not just employees.”

As a leader in India’s investment management sector, Cedrus has faced its share of challenges. Share an instance where his team’s resilience and ingenuity triumphed over adversity. Nilesh says that Robo Advisors and online platforms have disrupted this industry, which was earlier more on personal connections. “During the COVID times when the markets fell, our team individually spoke to investors and handheld them to make right decisions, which was impossible for Robo Advisors.” This helped investors make the right decisions and not lose out by cashing out when the markets were low.

With Honesty and Integrity

Nilesh’s experience in the investment management niche has made him a stalwart amongst his peers. Sharing his advice with budding entrepreneurs aspiring to venture into the niche, Nilesh says that with wealth being created in India, entrepreneurs have a huge opportunity to manage the wealth being created. There is a huge opportunity for young budding individuals who can take this as a career. “My advice to them would be to work on behalf of the investors with honesty and integrity.” Build this profession patiently and participate in investors’ wealth creation journey. Like health, wealth should be handled responsibly by advisors, as wrong decisions could adversely impact investors.

Creating A Wealthy Future

Sharing his future vision for Cedrus, Nilesh says they have a 17-year legacy with an impeccable track record, which would help them grow in an environment where wealth would be created faster in the future. “We need to continue doing the right things and avoid mistakes. Have a team that shares the same values that have helped us grow in the past.” He concludes that technological advancement, bespoke advisory solutions, and investor engagement would help them grow to the next level of participating not only in investors but also in India’s wealth creation journey.

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