Having regained the Rs 1 lakh crore level for average assets under management, leading fund house Reliance Capital Asset Management Company (RCAM) expects revival in retail investor interest in mutual funds to continue through the current fiscal and in the next year.
The average AUM of Reliance Mutual Fund, run by RCAM, grew by over Rs 9,200 crore in the last quarter to reach Rs 1,02,487 crore at the end of calendar year 2013, as per latest data available with industry body AMFI (Association of Mutual Funds in India).
"Growth in average AUM is mainly due to good liquidity and higher inflows in debt funds. We have lately seen an increasing interest from retail investors in the capital market through mutual fund, which is significant as the mutual fund industry is highly under-penetrated," RCAM CEO Sundeep Sikka told PTI.
"We are confident that the revival of retail participation will continue this year and in the next fiscal," he said.
RCAM, part of Anil Ambani-led Reliance Group's financial services arm Reliance Capital, was the first mutual fund house in India to cross the Rs 1 lakh-crore mark in average asset under management way back in 2009. However, it had slipped below this level in July-September quarter of 2013.
While regaining this mark during the September-December quarter of 2013, Reliance MF grew more than the industry average and its market share also increased to 11.70 per cent.
Currently, there are only two fund houses in the country with average AUM of more than Rs one lakh crore. While HDFC Mutual Fund tops the chart as the country's biggest fund house with average AUM of Rs 1,08,990 crore, Reliance MF is ranked second among the total 44 fund houses.
When asked about the focus areas in 2014, Sikka said that Reliance MF is aiming to create wealth for investors and become a bigger retail player by expanding the market and increasing the overall customer experience.
"From the wealth creation perspective, we are trying to see that our funds across asset classes - equity, debt and gold - do well as we want to be seen as a balanced fund house across asset classes," he said.
Sikka, who is also Chairman of industry body AMFI, asked the investors to look at asset managers who have a long-term track record and not just look at short-term volatility.
"It is very important to focus on long-term performance. Short-term performance and AUMs ¿ both are not the right barometers to judge the industry," he said.
"We aim at reaching every household in India and making mutual fund products available to one and all. We are committed to reach out to a large number of investors and confident of helping them create long-term wealth for themselves and their families," Sikka said.