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Growth of alternative investments in India

Growth of alternative investments in India

The landscape of investment opportunities has been rapidly evolving, and in recent years, there has been a growth of alternative investments, having gained significant traction among investors looking to diversify their portfolios and seek higher returns. India, with its burgeoning economy and dynamic business environment, is witnessing a growth story in the alternative investment industry. In this article, we will delve into the key factors driving this growth, the current state of the industry, and its potential future trajectory.

Understanding Alternative Investments

Alternative investments encompass a range of assets beyond traditional investments like stocks, bonds, and cash. These assets include private equity, hedge funds, venture capital, real estate, commodities, and more. Unlike traditional investments, alternative investments often have lower liquidity but can offer potentially higher returns and a chance to diversify risk.

The Growth Factors

Several factors are propelling the growth of alternative investments in India:

  1. Diversification: Investors are increasingly recognizing the importance of diversifying their portfolios to mitigate risk and secure investment. Alternative investments provide an avenue to diversify across various asset classes, reducing dependency on traditional markets.
  2. Potential for Higher Returns: With traditional investment options facing limitations due to market fluctuations, investors are seeking avenues for higher returns and high returns investments. Alternative investments have the potential to generate attractive returns, especially in sectors like private equity and venture capital.
  3. Entrepreneurial Ecosystem: India’s thriving start-up ecosystem has caught the attention of investors. Venture capital and private equity funds are pouring capital into promising start-ups, contributing to the growth of the alternative investment industry.
  4. Regulatory Support: The introduction of the Alternative Investment Funds (AIF) regulations by SEBI (Securities and Exchange Board of India) in 2012 provided a regulatory framework for managing alternative investments. This move bolstered investor confidence and contributed to industry growth.
  5. Changing Investor Demographics: The rise of High Net Worth Individuals (HNIs) and Ultra High Net Worth Individuals (UHNIs) in India has created a demand for sophisticated investment options, including alternative assets.

Current Landscape

Despite the growth potential, India’s alternative investment industry is still in its nascent stages compared to its global counterparts. As of 2020, alternative investments accounted for a mere $54 billion, less than 4% of India’s public market capitalization. The primary reasons for this modest size include high minimum investment sizes and the availability of relatively high returns in traditional asset classes.

Recent Developments

Two recent developments underscore the growth potential of India’s alternative investment industry:

  1. Jio Platforms: The successful fundraising of Jio Platforms, a digital services company, marked a significant milestone. This success has highlighted the attractiveness of Indian tech and private companies for private equity and global investors.
  2. Startups and Priority Sector Lending: The Reserve Bank of India’s decision to classify startups under Priority Sector Lending can potentially reduce funding costs for startups and boost investment in this sector.

Future Outlook

The Indian alternative investment industry is poised for further growth, driven by various factors, such as:

  1. Growing HNI Wealth: The increasing number of High Net Worth Individuals in India is expected to drive demand for alternative investment options.
  2. Low Penetration Levels: The current low penetration of alternative investment products presents room for expansion.
  3. Institutional Investor Allocations: Domestic institutional investors are also likely to allocate more funds to alternative investments, contributing to industry growth.

Challenges Ahead

While the growth prospects are promising, the industry faces certain challenges:

  1. Regulatory Framework: A robust regulatory framework is essential to maintain investor confidence and protect their interests.
  2. Performance Expectations: To attract investors, alternative investments must deliver superior risk-adjusted returns compared to traditional asset classes.


India’s alternative investment industry is on an upward trajectory, driven by factors like diversification needs, higher return expectations, and regulatory support. The industry’s growth journey is expected to continue, offering investors unique opportunities to participate in the dynamic and evolving Indian market. As the industry matures and regulatory frameworks evolve, alternative investments, known for their potential to provide passive income options and risk-adjusted investment, are likely to play an increasingly pivotal role in India’s investment landscape.

For more valuable insights and consultations regarding investment space in India, visit the Bhive Alts platform to access further information and advice.



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