KATHMANDU: At the age of 27, Joseph Adhikari is the managing director of Morningstar, an investment management firm. Even though he had enrolled as a science student after completing the School Leaving Certificate exams to fulfil his dream of becoming a doctor, he yearned to be an entrepreneur after going through the biographies and anecdotes of other industrialists.
This desire led him to grad-uate in BBA course under Tribhuvan University in 2006. Even back then, Adhikari liked to brainstorm with fellow students on how Nepal could benefit from trading, finance and commerce. In 2007, when he was 23, he formed a team of three members and launched the website Nepalsharemarket.com. Explaining the rationale behind this, he says, “As people had very little knowledge about the share market, we felt the need to educate them. We posted detailed technical analysis and relevant articles after extensive research, so it soon became popular.”
Adhikari and his team also wrote articles in various newspapers. The write-ups with detailed technical analysis of the stock market drew the
attention of COMEN, the first commodity exchange of Nepal. COMEN asked Adhikari and his team to train its brokers and
investors. “We designed the course in 15 days and were fully prepared for training,” says Adhikari, adding, “We then launched Morningstar in 2009.” In the beginning, several detractors expressed doubts about the success of the website. But six months later, there was an upsurge in the number of brokers and investors approaching the firm. “We have trained around 5,000 brokers and investors as of today, and ours is the best service provider in the commodity exchange market,” Adhikari claims, explaining that Morningstar is contributing to better performance of commodity exchange companies of Nepal like COMEN, Mercantile Exchange Nepal Limited and Nepal
Derivative Exchange Limited.
However, aspirants like him also face challenges due to small market size of Nepal, lack of awareness about commodity trading and limited legal framework. Adhikari nurtures the ambition of establishing a merchant or investment bank that provides overall wealth management facilities in the future. “Commodity market is an online business and Nepal has geographical advantage because we can watch markets of Europe, Asia Pacific and the US from early morning to late evening. If we can organise this sector, we can draw in tremendous volume of foreign investment,” he says.
Besides being a busy entrepreneur, Adhikari also has a penchant for social work. He has participated in several human-itarian activities. Also a technical consultant to the Securities Board of Nepal (SEBON), he single-handedly runs a charity programme to benefit children deprived of education in his home district. Adhikari has been coordinating with foreign donors to provide full study cost from grade one to 10 for five school children a year. Success is attained through hard work, optimistic attitude and patience, according to Adhikari, who
believes in perceiving the positive aspects of everything.