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  • Writer's pictureGalactic Advisors

Computer Age Management Services Decoded

Updated: Sep 3, 2020

If you have ever opened a mutual fund account, chances are there you would have heard of CAMS/Karvy - the RTA (Registrar and Transfer agent) of mutual funds.

If you want to understand more about the company and the industry it operates, go on and read the notes below.

IPO Filings/DRHP’s are some of the best places to learn from when you are trying to understand the company and industry it operates in. In this letter, we will delve into the IPO filing of CAMS (the largest RTA in the country)


  • Founded in 1998, CAMS ( Computer Age Management Services Pvt. Ltd ) is India’s largest registrar and transfer agent of mutual funds with an aggregate market share of 69.4% based on mutual fund AUM managed by its clients (Asset Management Companies) during November 2019

  • This IPO is an offer of sale .i.e. the proceeds from the IPO will be going only to the existing shareholders selling their shares.



CAMS Shareholding

Growth Drivers:

  • Growth in the mutual fund industry on back of increasing savings moving towards financial assets:

  • India’s mutual fund AUM as a % of GDP is significantly lower than the world average:

  • The number of mutual fund houses have been largely stable over the last few years, hence, the growth in the revenues will be largely on back of growth of AUM managed by the fund houses.

  • Mutual fund industry comprises of 41 AMCs (excluding Infrastructure Debt Funds) and a majority of the total mutual fund AUM is managed by the top five AMCs which have approximately 60% of the total market share as of March 2019. (Market share of top five AMCs has risen in the last few years from 54% in financial year 2015 to 58% in financial year 2019)

Services provided by RTA’s to AMC’s:

  • Knowledge partner of AMC’s: Given the history of RTA’s association with AMC’s, they apply analytics to accumulated data and help AMCs in the development of innovative products

  • Service aggregator: RTA’s bring cost efficiency to the table due to having similar scope of work across major AMC’s (e.g. sending notifications to the customer)

  • Operational Integration & Customer Care: Onboarding customers, maintaining records, data upgradation

Revenue Model:

  • Revenue is derived from fees charged for servicing the AAUM (average assets under management ) of the funds serviced by CAMS

  • Charge higher fees for equity mutual funds v/s debt funds

  • Contracts with Mutual fund and AIF clients are typically perpetual in nature, unless terminated by either party while it is 3-5 years for other clients

  • Major part of the revenue earned (estimated to be over 80%) is by means of tiered fees charged on the AUMs managed for which the MF RTAs provide service. These tend to decrease as a proportion of total AUMs once the AUMs surpass the tiers for which the fees are agreed on. Fees charged by RTA’s to Mutual Fund houses:

  • With the increase in AUM managed, the fees charged as proportion of AUM has been falling, but the extent of decline in pricing despite the strong growth in AUM (i.e. approximately a 30% CAGR) indicates the reasonably strong bargaining power enjoyed by MF RTAs

  • In FY 2020, MF RTAs witnessed some pricing pressure, as the SEBI reduced the total expense mutual funds were allowed to charge.

  • According to CRISIL, a moderate reduction in fees charged by RTAs as a proportion of AUM as the size of industry AUM increases is expected. However, RTAs will benefit from an expected increase in the share of equity and hybrid funds in industry AUM.

  • There is no impact of direct plans growth on RTA’s as RTAs as these are charged based on AUM,irrespective of which plan is opted for by investors

  • RTA’s also offer similar services to Alternate Investment Funds (AIF)

In addition,RTA’s also have offer similar services to insurance companies for policy servicing of e-insurance policies. There are 4 insurance repositories in India :

  • CAMS Insurance Repository Services Limited;

  • Central Insurance Repository Limited;

  • KARVY Insurance Repository Limited; and

  • NSDL Database Management Limited.

Competitive Landscape

Following are the are the mutual fund registrar and transfer agents operating in India:

  • Computer Age Management Services Limited (“CAMS”),

  • KFin Technologies Private Limited (erstwhile Karvy Fintech Private Limited) (“Karvy”)

  • Sundaram BNP Paribas Fund Services (acquired by Karvy in October 2019)

  • Franklin Templeton Asset Management (India) Private Limited

CAMS Holding