PT: How was it at the start?
Mehran: Born in a Zoroastrian family, I was always taught the importance of hardwork and honesty. My childhood was extremely sweet and I reminisce those days. Khaavanoo ne peevanoo was on the house but I had to earn my own pocket-money. At nineteen, I had no choice but to work. I studied at a night college and during the day, I burnt and sold music CDs (a raving trend back then). I completed my Masters from Symbiosis Institute of Business Management.
PT: How were you introduced to the world of finance?
Mehran: My father would say, “Dikra, to be a Parsi you need to own two things, Tata shares and a Fiat”. The former was more affordable, and hence at the age of twenty, I met my guru, Khushru Kanga and began dabbling in the share market. I made mistakes in the stock market but these gave me experience. No regrets, I learnt what not to do!
PT: What motivated you to start your own firm?
Mehran: During my last corporate stint with a multinational bank, I realized there was a huge vacuum between clients and portfolio managers. No sooner did the client develop a sense of comfort, than the relationship manager would leave! My experience confirms that clients prefer long term relationships, nurtured with trust. Thus, I decided to start ‘Ethix’.
PT: Tell us about ‘Ethix’.
Mehran: Ethix is a wealth management firm that I founded in 2008. My father always advised, “Son, holding on to your values is more important than chasing success”. Hence, the company never compromises on values, irrespective of the ticket size. Presently, we are amongst the top hundred independent financial advisories in the country. Business growth has been our secondary priority.
PT: What does Ethix do differently?
Mehran: We focus on and offer a lifetime of relationships, which no bank or broking firm can afford to offer, owing to the peer revenue pressure. At Ethix, we are entrepreneurs who believe in long term associations with our clients, and not mere employees aiming to achieve monthly targets!
PT: What other interests do you pursue alongside your business?
Mehran: What I’m currently doing with Parsi Times – writing! Other varied interests like biking, gardening, fitness, reading and laughing at my own self, give me immense joy.
PT: What is your goal in life?
Mehran: My ultimate goal is to impact people’s lives, be it professionally or personally.
PT: What are the main areas of wealth management that one should focus on to grow their investments? And how do you plan to take the PT readers through that in your oncoming columns?
Mehran: Investing is very simple – we complicate it! Be it lack of discipline or ignorance or trying your hands at exotic products. My forthcoming columns in PT will articulate more about how to invest rather than just where to invest.