Opportunities and Risks of Venture and Strategic Investing in BRICS Countries, March 2012

BRICS Connect has hosted several events in the past including the one on Brazil and India and we are looking forward to many more events in the coming year. The Venture Summit Panel was moderated by Joe Daniels, Partner, Loeb and Loeb and the panel consisting of Investment managers in China, Brazil, India and South Africa discussed the opportunities in these emerging markets. In Brazil due to rise in middle class there is a tremendous opportunities in healthcare, education, entertainment and consumer goods sector. Due to two major events happening in Brazil over the next two years related to World Cup Soccer and Olympics, there is a major thrust in Infrastructure sector. Though there was slowdown in all the economies including Brazil during 2008/2009, Brazil has bounced back quite well and the unemployment in this economy is quite low around five percent.  Though the GDP growth rate in Brazil is three percent, the valuations of mid-market companies is quite attractive.

China like India has tremendous challenge in maintaining the high growth level over the past year. The internal demand has grown tremendously over the past years. The investment opportunities in China are there in those companies which have improved their operational efficiencies over the past years. The current environment in India is also very challenging and it is becoming difficult for India to maintain its high growth rate over the past year. If horizon for investment is long term than India still offers great opportunity as the domestic consumption of middle class is still very strong. There is great opportunity in mid cap sectors like Biotech, Technology and Energy in India. South Africa is positive on the economic side and bumpy on the political side. There is increase in consumer demand increase of South Africa as a regional hub and gateway to the African region.

The BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – together make up 46% of the world’s population, 50% of world’s GDP growth and hold a combined GDP of 19.3 trillion dollars, by 2050 the combined economies of the BRICS could eclipse the combined economies of the current richest countries of the world. The rapid growth of emerging economies including BRICS members will be conducive to making the international order more just and equitable.

Bharat Ramini is an accomplished executive with significant global business experience.  He also founded, grew and exited a publically listed company in India – Melstar Information Technologies, Ltd.  The company has operations in India, Europe and the US and was acquired by the Birla Group.  Bharat created BRICS Connect in 2011.  It is a firm that creates business opportunities through their global services aimed at emerging economic powerhouses Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.  Bharat has graduate and post graduate degrees from Bombay University and St. Xavier Institute of Management, respectively, and an undergraduate degree from VJTI Bombay University.