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Ashish Dhawan Investment Portfolio 2023

18 Oct 2023

In the world of Indian investing, there are many accomplished individuals, but only a few have made significant contributions to building world-class institutions that have profoundly impacted the education sector. Ashish Dhawan is one among this exclusive group who is an entrepreneur, an investment manager responsible for a multi-billion-dollar fund, and a philanthropist.

Ashish Dhawan's Career Path

In 1992, Ashish Dhawan began his investment career as the sole Indian analyst at a boutique investment bank on Wall Street. He pursued an MBA in leadership at Harvard Business School between 1993-1995. After completing his MBA, Dhawan worked in the Risk Arbitrage Group at Goldman Sachs in New York.

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However, at the age of 28, he made the bold choice to return to India. In 1999, Dhawan co-founded ChrysCapital, a private equity firm, with his Harvard classmate Raj Kondur. Despite early challenges in the emerging private equity market, the company thrived. Within just five to six years, ChrysCapital managed funds totalling $1 billion under Dhawan's leadership, becoming one of India's most significant funds.

Today, ChrysCapital remains India's premier equity fund. After two decades in investment management, Dhawan transitioned from his full-time role at ChrysCapital to pursue philanthropy.

In 2012, Ashish Dhawan initiated an impressive venture known as the Central Square Foundation (CSF). This organization focuses on providing financial support to enhance the quality of education in India. Additionally, they engage in extensive research and strategic planning to improve education policies.

Post this, in 2014, Ashish Dhawan collaborated with 40 other passionate individuals and co-founded Ashoka University. This institution is unique because it's the first of its kind in India, strongly emphasising liberal arts. This means that the university offers a comprehensive range of subjects, providing students with a well-rounded education. 

Let’s take a look at Ashish Dhwan’s investment niche and how his portfolio has performed over the years:

Ashish Dhawan's Current Portfolio:

Company Name Holding Value (in ₹) Shares Held Holding Percentage in Company
Religare Enterprises Ltd ₹ 111.60 53,86,564 1.70%
Dish TV India Ltd ₹ 48.40 2,89,57,491 1.60%
Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd ₹ 587.50 72,00,000 2.60%
AGI Greenpac Ltd ₹ 201.60 31,00,000 4.80%
IDFC Ltd ₹ 668.90 5,60,00,000 3.50%
Mahindra and Mahindra Financial Services Ltd ₹ 431.50 1,46,00,000 1.20%
Greenlam Industries Ltd ₹ 219.30 48,14,210 3.80%
Palred Technologies Ltd ₹ 11.60 6,78,189 5.50%
Quess Corp Ltd ₹ 248.50 58,61,223 4.00%
RPSG Ventures Ltd ₹ 66.00 12,34,286 4.20%
Arvind Fashions Ltd ₹ 221.40 65,64,065 4.90%
Equitas Small Finance Bank Ltd ₹ 348.80 4,03,70,000 3.60%


Investment success over the years:

Suzlon Investment (2004):

In 2004, ChrysCapital made a significant investment of Rs. 100 crore in Suzlon. They held this investment until 2007; during these years, their investment yielded substantial returns of Rs. 1300 crore.

Portfolio in 2017:

By the second quarter of 2017, Ashish Dhawan's portfolio consisted of approximately 15 different stocks. Among these holdings, V Mart Retail Ltd. and IDFC Limited were the most substantial investments.

Portfolio in 2018:

In 2018, Ashish Dhawan adopted a diversified approach to his portfolio. He expanded his investments across various stocks to reduce risk and increase diversification. Three new stocks were added to his portfolio, including AllCargo Logistics Ltd., Dish TV India Ltd., and Karur Vysya Bank Ltd. Prior to these additions, his portfolio consisted of just six stocks, bringing the total to nine.

Portfolio in 2019:

By 2019, Ashish Dhawan further diversified his holdings, increasing the number of stocks in his portfolio from nine to eleven. His investments were spread across various sectors, with a notable focus on financial companies, technology stocks, logistics, and retail markets. This marked a significant shift from the composition of his portfolio in the previous year.

Three key strategies drive strategies that made Ashish Dhawan Ashish Dhawan's investment successful:

1. Diversified Investments:  During the Dot Com crash, diversification saved him from heavy losses in the telecom sector, resulting in substantial returns from his investment in SpectraMind. ChrysCapital's diversified investments in various companies, including Axis Bank and Shriram Transport Finance, yielded significant profits.

2. Market Analysis:  Dhawan stresses the importance of thorough market analysis to assess profits and risks. His losses in Allsec Technologies, Orient Green Power, and Mastek taught him the importance of considering associated risks.

3. Long-Term Focus: Dhawan's long-term investment approach, exemplified by his investment in Mphasis, where he endured price drops but eventually gained five times the initial returns, emphasises the wisdom of staying invested to achieve higher returns.


Due to the early success Ashish made in his investment journey, he had the freedom to shift gears and build multiple careers in the education sector and then into philanthropy. He stresses the importance of making informed decisions, long-term investments, and thorough research. He advises against letting fear lead to poor choices. 

Dhawan’s story teaches us to learn from our mistakes and maintain discipline. While the stock market can test patience, it often rewards those who remain steadfast.


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