Company News

India's first sharia fund collects 50 mln rupees

MUMBAI, April 8 (Reuters) - India’s Taurus Asset Management has collected about 50 million rupees in the country’s first actively managed sharia-compliant equity mutual fund it launched in February, chief executive Waqar Naqvi said on Wednesday.

“Around 5 crores... not bad given the fact that even very large fund houses collected some 2 crores or 3 crores,” Naqvi said, referring to the mop-up.

Taurus held average assets of about 2 billion rupees in March, making it one of the smallest players in India’s 35-member mutual fund industry.

“While the enthusiasm was there, the market condition was really tough,” he said, referring to a volatile Indian stock market that has led to a pause in inflows into the industry.

New equity funds, not including Taurus, collected about 60 million rupees in the first two months of 2009, according to data from the Association of Mutual Funds in India.

Taurus’ fund joins the fast-growing Islamic investments industry estimated to be managing about $65 billion globally with nearly half of the money invested through mutual funds.

Islamic investing forbids Muslims from receiving interest payments and investing in companies involved in the production or sale of pork, alcohol, tobacco, pornography, gambling and non-Islamically structured finance or life insurance. (To read more Islamic finance, click on [ID:nISLAMIC]) (Reporting by Nishant Kumar; editing by Sunil Nair)