Avendus set to enter brokerage business

Avendus set to enter brokerage business

Mumbai: Investment bank Avendus Advisors Pvt. Ltd is set to open their institutional brokerage business in January. The business is part of the equity and capital markets group that launched its initial public offerings advisory business in July. Girish Nadkarni, former COO (investment banking and institutional equity) IL&FS Investsmart Ltd, joined Avendus in August to lead this practice.

Avendus has been expanding into new services this year including the creation of a corporate debt and special solutions group that does distressed asset financing and structured financing. The expansion of the firm has been capped off in the last two weeks with new office space that more than triples the capacity for headcount. The proposed institutional brokerage division will have 25-30 people. The equity and capital markets group currently has a five-member team.

Avendus is diversifying its business amidt an explosion of financial services firms entering new service lines. Edelweiss Capital Ltd started as an investment bank and recently entered the institutional equities, private client brokerage and wealth management businesses. Enam Securities Pvt. Ltd went in the opposite direction, starting out as an institutional brokerage in 1984, adding an investment bank in the 1990s and in the last six months also getting into retail broking, insurance broking and wealth management. Ambit RSM Pvt. Ltd was a strong accounting firm that has transformed itself into a corporate finance advisory firm.

Avendus’ staple business has been advising clients on M&A, which has been about 70% of deals (the remaining deals are private equity syndication). While 60% of their M&A deals cross the border, 85-95% have been with the United States, according to Aashish Bhinde, executive director at Avendus, who said that they have recognized Europe as the next important market for cross-border M&As.