Franklin Templeton Investments has emerged as the largest private sector mutual fund house with assets of Rs 15,187 crore (Rs 151.87 billion) as on March 31, 2004, outstripping its closest competitors, Prudential ICICI Mutual Fund and HDFC Mutual Fund, data released by the industry body, the Association of Mutual Funds, shows.
AMFI's data for the financial year shows that Franklin Templeton is followed by HDFC MF with assets of Rs 14,985 crore (Rs 149.85 billion). Prudential-ICICI MF is at third place with Rs 14,334.64 crore (Rs 143.35 billion) in assets. In the public sector, UTI Mutual Fund is the clear leader with assets in excess of Rs 20,000 crore (Rs 200 billion).
Franklin Templeton executives claim it has assets close to Rs 16,000 crore (Rs 160 billion). In the last six months, its assets grew by Rs 1,784 crore (Rs 17.84 billion), while in the last three months it added around Rs 122 crore (Rs 1.22 billion) to its base.
From Rs 50 crore (Rs 500 million) in September 1996, the fund grew to Rs 2,000 crore (Rs 20 billion) in 2000 and then to over Rs 8,000 crore (Rs 80 billion) by September 2002 with the acquisition of Pioneer ITI's assets.
The largest equity scheme in the Franklin Templeton's stable is the Franklin India Bluechip Fund with an asset base of Rs 1,765 crore (Rs 17.65 billion), while the largest liquid scheme is the Templeton India Treasury Management Account with Rs 1,934 crore (Rs 19.34 billion) assets.
The fund house has equity assets of Rs 4,234 crore (Rs 42.34 billion), constituting nearly 28 per cent of its total assets. The Blue Chip Fund has posted returns of over 134 per cent in the last one year, while its growth Fund has seen returns of close to 137 per cent in the same period.
Ravi Mehrotra, president, Franklin Templeton Investments told Business Standard: "We are open to the option of organic growth as well as acquisitions (to grow our assets). While we are looking at our India business grow organically, if an opportunity presents itself that fits our long-term strategy and vision, we will not be averse to taking the inorganic route as well."With respect to introducing Franklin Templeton's international schemes to the Indian investors after the recent relaxation by the Reserve Bank of India for the Indian investments abroad, Mehrotra said, "We are currently awaiting clarifications and guidelines from the regulators in order to launch our offshore schemes in the country either through direct offerings of our overseas schemes or through the feeder route. We have a portfolio of about 50 international schemes, which can help individual investors in India achieve global diversification across asset classes."