Veteran of value investing sought to take wealth creation to masses

Published: May 5, 2015 12:15:33 AM

Paragbhai, as I would address him, was a very dear friend.

Paragbhai, as I would address him, was a very dear friend. He was probably one of the first persons I was introduced to when I started my journey in India’s capital markets in the decade of 1980s. He earned ny respect with his knowledge and intelligence on investment matters .

Over the years our conversations would go far beyond investment ideas and themes. His ability to read the minds of investors, which he later penned down in his book Value Investing & Behavioral Finance was an eye opener in those days.

He would often say, “When others are greedy be fearful and when others are fearful be greedy”.

He was critical of the kind of investor behaviour, which would thoughtlessly indulge into ill-timed bouts of greed and fear. And I quote him, “Rational and successful investing is all about restraining and channelising these emotions and understanding behavioral finance, not market sentiment, crowd behaviour or company performances.”

After a humble beginning as a broker, he won recognition as a professional who promoted the idea of value-investing among investors. Often he would ask me, “ Deven, you have been following value investing and making it popular among a large section of investors over the years. Do you get paid for the value advice you give to investors? You make them invest for long term by sacrificing your brokerage revenues and grow their wealth, it is indeed admirable.”

I have always found him very sharp and effective with his communications. He would easily convey the most difficult thoughts in a subtle manner.

A vivid reader, a deep thinker and a revolutionary in his approach, Parag bhai would often bring up subjects demanding radical change. A true visionary, an upright communicator, he would rationally put across innovative ways of executing ideas without being daunted by opposition. Frankly, I would admire him for this very special quality.

Very few people are selfless in this world when it comes to sharing. He not only shared but also inspired many, especially with his knowledge and ideas.

Of late in last few years, I observed him passionately undertaking the transition from managed account services to mutual fund. He dreamt of taking the process of wealth creation to the masses by providing them ‘individual portfolio manager’ under mutual fund vehicle. Playing the role of a true leader who led from the front, he began mentoring his young team of professionals while preaching value-investing principles.

Parag bhai belonged to and stayed in the generation of Chandrakant Sampath and Kisanbhai Choksey, who among others are the evergreen value investors India has produced in the last century. It is his destiny which led him to Omaha, to meet the king of value investing, Warren Buffet.

Deven Choksey

Deven Choksey is the CEO & managing director of KRChoksey Shares & Securities

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