The new fund has a strong foothold in the performing credit market and has acquired regulatory clearance from SEBI under the Alternative Investment Fund (AIF) category II.

Shantanu Sahai, who was previously employed by Nomura India as the managing director and head of debt, has joined the company as senior managing partner and head of the fund.

Shantanu Sahai, senior managing partner, ASK Private Wealth.

Furthermore, the primary goal of the ASK Private Credit Fund (PCF) is to achieve greater risk-adjusted returns by tapping tailored opportunities in credit markets caused by regulatory dislocations for borrowers seeking money for non-traditional uses.

The fund will look for opportunities in industries like healthcare, consumer products, financial services, IT & ITES, manufacturing, speciality chemicals, and renewables where private equity players are active.

It will invest in both operational and promoter/holding companies, and will steer away from venture funding, distressed real estate, utilities, and state-owned or real estate businesses.

However, to address corporate governance concerns and set itself apart from traditional credit risk-focused strategies, the fund will primarily look for credit opportunities among reliable corporate houses or the portfolio companies of reputable private equity funds.

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Compared to typical loan investments and private equity, the fund’s penchant for working with profitable mid-market companies that rely on operating cash flows offers a better risk-reward balance.

The ASK Private credit fund will be overseen by a team of investors with more than 75 years of combined experience in credit investing.

It is intended to be a closed-ended fund with a duration of five years from the first close.

Rajesh Saluja, CEO & managing director, ASK Private Wealth said: “India’s status as a major manufacturing hub, driven by the China Plus One strategy, further fuels the demand for private credit. Our fund aims to bridge this gap, catering to rising demand and capitalizing on the growing private credit space in India. We extend a warm welcome to Shantanu Sahai as our senior managing partner, who will play a pivotal role in nurturing and propelling this vertical forward. His 2 decades of expertise in establishing and growing businesses of this nature with pedigreed global credit institutions in the past will undeniably enhance ASK Private Wealth’s capabilities and drive performance, delivering on our growth ambitions. Shantanu, along with a world class team of investment professionals’ cherry picked from global tier-1 credit institutions to manage this fund, bring unique market access and an unwavering commitment to corporate governance.”

Sahai added: “I am thrilled to be a part of ASK Private Wealth at this important juncture. With the team’s rich experience in the private credit space, we aim to fill this gap and cater to these underserved businesses.”