Updated on 29 July 2017
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Top 6 fund managers have managed to provide excellent returns
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Spotting a winning trend and sticking to it is not easy for an investor.

But these six Fund Managers spotted a few winning stocks very early last calendar year, and had identified many others even before the current leg of the rally that started in September 2013.

But in February 2016, the India market rally suddenly lost momentum. Shares were sinking every day, the economy seemed to be going nowhere, and PM Narendra Modi's popularity was getting hit by economic troubles. But the 'Daring Six' decided that it was not the time to be shy or cautious.

They went all out, believing strongly that markets were on the cusp of doing something big. Clearly, they were not wrong.

HDFC Top 200 Fund
Fund category: Large Cap

Prashant Jain, Fund Manager
AUM : Rs 14,452 crore Annualised Return : 41.25%

Jain bet heavy on an industrial recovery and went overweight corporate banks, engineering and construction companies, which helped the Top 200 fund, especially after demonetisation in November last year. This strategy also helped the fund recoup its losses and make up for some underperformance in 2015. He identified the downtick in pharma and went underweight on the sector. The weightage on ITC and Reliance Industries was increased, while profit booking in BPCL helped the fund outperform in the large-cap category.

HDFC Equity Fund
Fund category: Multicap
AUM: Rs 19,320 crore Annualised Return : 43.59%

For this fund, Jain placed the bets on the industry recovery -just like in Top 200 -but his aggressive calls were on corporate banks and some midcap stocks, which helped him deliver stellar returns. Bets on construction projects and power sector stocks, such as CESC, Power Grid Corporation of India and Kalpataru Power Transmission, yielded superior returns.

Mirae Asset India Opportunities Fund
Fund category: Large Cap
AUM : Rs 4,030 crore Annualised Return : 38.74%

Neelesh Surana, Fund Manager
Surana went overweight on private sector banks, had zero exposure to PSU banks, and went underweight on IT and FMCG. This helped this fund come up as a winner in the past one and half years. Additional returns were generated by opportunistic plays in the mid-cap space where the Fund Manager took a 15-20 p exposure. Surana was among the early ones to identify stocks such as Vinati Organics and Ceat, which worked well for the fund.

Mirae Asset Emerging Bluechip Fund
Fund category: Midcap
AUM: Rs 4,005 crore Annualised Return : 49.19%

Surana is famous for selecting a stock only when three main parameters are met: Earnings quality, products and presence in the industry; management (corporate governance); and valuations. The Fund Manager hunts for companies with decent growth and a good return on capital employed. Stocks like SRF, Nilkamal Plastics have given multibagger returns to the fund.

L&T Emerging Businesses Fund
Fund category: Small cap
AUM: Rs 1,238 crore Annualised Return : 61.26%

Soumendra Nath Lahiri and Karan Desai, Fund Managers

The duo eyes companies with positive cash flows. The portfolio has as many as 60-70 stocks, and the Fund Managers avoid taking big bets in the small-cap space. Stocks like Avanti Feeds, Aarti Industries and Sudarshan Chemicals have given high returns.

Birla Sun Life Equity
Fund category: Multicap
AUM: Rs 3,344 crore Annualised Return : 42.73%

Anil Shah, Fund Manager
Anil Shah used a top-down approach and went overweight on global metals space earlier than others. Among his picks were Cairn India and Vedanta. Like Jain and others, he went underweight on IT and pharmaceuticals, which protected the downside. He identified long-term structural stories in private sector banks and Nonbanking Financial Company (NBFC) companies.

Reliance Small Cap Fund
Fund category : Small Cap
AUM: Rs 3344 crore Annualised return = 50.12%

Sunil Singhania and Samir Rachh, Fund Managers

Singhania looks at buying good businesses with good management at a reasonable price. The businesses should have decent ability to scale up and sustain even in negative environments. The strength of a large research team tracking 450 stocks has helped the investment team spot several good opportunities in the small cap space.

IDFC Sterling Equity Fund
Fund category: Midcap
AUM : Rs 1458 crore Annualised Return : 49.6%

Anoop Bhaskar, Fund Manager
Anoop Bhaskar focused on three themes which include identifying leaders, emerging players and challengers--those who change the rules of the game or bring in new ways of doing business in a sector.Based on this strategy, he identified challengers in Nifty companies such as IndusInd Bank, RBL Bank, Ramco Cement and Bajaj Finance in sectors such as banking, automobile and cement. In addition, he identified and added leaders of sectors which are not part of the Nifty. These include Future Retail, Entertainment Network, MRF, and PVR. Other additions included companies at either an early stage of growth or where penetration of organized players is expanding. These include Greenply Industries, Dollar Industries, and Minda Industries.