The Private Equity designation characterizes a wide range of investment firms. Although it is tempting to evaluate the asset class through a singular lens, there are genuine differences between firms and the underlying investment themes, financial product offerings, portfolio volatility, risk-reward, and the methodology of decision making.

 

The Mandala Method

At Mandala Capital, we pride ourselves in our structured and comprehensive approach to investments in the food and agri industry. This process has been developed over a decade by our Team and built upon our past experiences and lessons learnt— particularly during the early years of Fund I.

The process is continuously refined through strategy sessions, conversations with our LPs and market participants, and constant self-introspection. Doing so allows us to better foresee trends and disruptions in the marketplace, as well as develop financial products that are best suited to withstand downward market movements and capture long term high growth opportunities.

Mandala Capital's investment strategy is focused on four steps which we define as follows:

  1. Thesis Driven
  2. Deal Creation
  3. Deal Structuring
  4. Value through Operations

Mandala Capital thoroughly evaluates each investment through this rigorous step-by-step approach— before and during an investment’s lifetime- to ensure that the deal is beneficial to all stakeholders.

 

Thesis Driven

Developing a thesis is a complex exercise and a key differentiator for Mandala Capital.

This is an ongoing and continuous process where we leverage our Team and our broader network’s combined market experience, market relationships, and access independent research where necessary. We consider three broad areas to help us develop a thesis and identify target companies. These comprise Industry, Mandala Edge, and Exit.

Using Industry research is not a novel approach. However, combined with Mandala Edge and Exit analysis, it helps create strong conviction on pursuing certain transactions and maximises return opportunities.

 

Deal Creation

We spend a long time on the ground truly understanding the needs of the companies, and more importantly, the people behind the companies we invest in.

Many firms in the Indian food-agri industry are family-run businesses that come with a unique set of challenges and concerns. Through the personal relationships we form, we are able to understand the nuances behind operational decisions that cannot be captured on spreadsheets or metrics.

 

Deal Structuring

Thanks to the unprecedented amount of time spent nurturing relationships with our partners and deeply understanding their unique needs, we are able to structure deals nontypical of a private equity firm. These include a combination of various debt-like and equity-like instruments along with FX hedges and incentive structures to align interests. In the food and agribusiness sector, where it is conceivable to see annual operating plans change several times a year due to external forces, our deal structures help secure returns and provide downside protection, while delivering a product that works for our partners and stakeholders.

While we spend increasing time on each component of our strategy and work tirelessly to develop and maintain our proprietary edge, in the area of Deal Structuring, we believe that we have been ahead of the curve from the early days with a healthy respect for risk-reward balance and reduced volatility in our investments.

 

Value through Operations

Finally, we commit to leaving every investment with greater operational capabilities post-investment, as part of our mission to grow industry-leading agriculture, food and food related companies.

We share knowledge with other thought-leaders in the industry and are heavily invested in agtech and new frontiers. With 360 degree sector understanding, we are able to advise and help increase the value of all our investments. More recently, we have also added Impact management as part of our Value through Operations step, and introduced a proprietary quantitative methodology to track and monitor the dollar impact created by each of our companies following our investment.

If you are interested in engaging with Mandala Capital, please contact us to find out more.

Mandala Capital is a private equity firm focused on long term and sustainable investments across the food value chain in India and South East Asia. We partner with visionary promoters and management by providing complete financial and operational support to increase the companies’ value and help companies achieve sustained leadership in their sectors.

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