Prashant Khemka: Building A Unique Investment Culture That Prioritizes On High Performance | CEOInsights Vendor
Prashant Khemka: Building A Unique Investment Culture That Prioritizes On High Performance

Prashant Khemka: Building A Unique Investment Culture That Prioritizes On High Performance

 Prashant Khemka,   Founder

Prashant Khemka


The investment management industry is emerging as an attractive segment within the financial services sector. White Oak Capital is a pioneering investment management and advisory firm, founded by Prashant Khemka. This seasoned industry veteran set out to create a performance-centric organization with a strong investment culture. Started in 2017, White Oak Capital Management has offices in India, Singapore, Mauritius, UK, and Switzerland. The quality of their offerings and performance has been the primary catalyst behind their growth and this has also helped the firm to build a stellar reputation in the industry.

In an exclusive interview with CEO Insights, Prashant talks more about his professional journey and the unique business operations of White Oak Capital Management.

Can you tell us about your professional background prior to establishing White Oak Capital Management? Also, how would you describe your leadership style?
My professional career began at State Street Global Advisors, where I joined as a full-time employee in 1998 after my internship with them. I worked on the quantitative asset management side before dealing with fundamental equity at the firm. This experience later helped me in formulating a framework for risk management and portfolio construction. Then in 2000, I joined Goldman Sachs Asset Management in their US Growth Equity team. From 2002 till 2006 I predominantly focused on US equities to learn more about it. I returned to India in 2006 to launch the GS India Strategy which I managed as CIO and Lead PM for over ten years till I left GSAM in 2017.

During this time, I also moved to Singapore in 2013 to assume the role of CIO and Lead PM of Global Emerging Markets (GEM) Equity which I managed for nearly four years alongside the GS India Strategy. It was a great learning experience to have built the GS India business from scratch and to have turned around the GS GEM business successfully which entailed various
aspects of building the team, establishing the philosophy, laying a disciplined process and managing a balanced portfolio to deliver consistent performance. When I left, both these strategies were amongst the top rankings compared to their peer group, and the team there has continued to do well since then.

As far as future plans are concerned, my goal is very clear when it comes to what we should deliver as a team and that is offer the highest performance to our clients

As far as my leadership style is concerned, I view investing as a highly competitive team sport. So, what I strive to do is to lead my team so that they can perform like a well-oiled machine to reach our common objectives. For me personally, I believe my strength is to identify strong talents, onboard them, motivate them, and integrate them into the team seamlessly.

What was the motivation behind the establishment of White Oak Capital Management? Also, can you give a brief overview of the company?
We at White Oak are dealing with asset management and from a very young age onwards, it was a dream of mine to start a business enterprise of my own. So, after spending nearly two decades in the corporate world, I founded White Oak Capital Management in June 2017 with the objective of building a performance centric organization with a strong investment culture. We provide investment management and investment advisory services to our clients. Throughout my professional journey, I was lucky enough to work with pioneering professionals who have taught me a lot. And I believe that, there is something new to learn in this domain on a regular basis which motivates me to reinvent myself constantly.

What was the major challenge that you faced during your early days and how did you overcome that?
One of the primary challenges during our initial days was to convince the clients to show confidence in us and our capabilities. We overcame this by putting the best team together across all our functions. This coupled with our transparent business operations helped us to gain the trust of our clients. And as of now, we have been able to not just build but also maintain an
impressive clientele across the world.

Over the last few years, we have received many awards which is a testament to our strong performance first investment culture. However, the biggest award and recognition for me is the confidence that our clients repose in us when they entrust us with their capital.

What is the current market position of White Oak Capital Management and what is your USP?
We are a performance focused investment organization with a very strong and unique investment culture. We have the best team in the industry implementing a very tested and proven investment process. We have a very balanced portfolio construction approach that is very unique to us and ensuring the highest results for our clients is what dives us forward.

Our performance first culture is the basic foundation of our company and we have built a great team that ensures consistent high level performance. Apart from that, our robust risk management approach is also unique. All these different factors help us to not only stand out from the rest of the industry but it has also allowed us to create a niche in the market.

How do you find the perfect balance between your personal and professional life? Also, what are some of your future goals?
I don’t think there is a perfect balance between work and personal life. What I believe is, one must be able to work through this imbalance and still produce great results while at the same time giving emphasis on enjoying one’s life.

As far as future plans are concerned, my goal is very clear when it comes to what we should deliver as a team and that is offer the highest performance to our clients. We will continue to improve our quality while at the same time make sure that our offerings are competitively priced in the market.

Prashant Khemka, Founder, White Oak Capital Management
Prashant, Founder This pioneering business leader strives to create the right work environment where the employees can thrive and remain motivated. His guidance has also helped the company to break new business frontiers and strive for sustained excellence in the market.

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