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Students on our MBA programme can choose 2 electives. Here, Hemant Chandran tells us about the two Finance electives he undertook:

“As soon as I joined the MBA programme, I made up my mind to opt for Strategic Financial Management (SFM) & Security Analysis and Portfolio Management (SFS). Finance and Financial management have been my passion ever since I came to know of them. Apart from this, I was all too eager to add unknown financial tools to my repertoire. My excitement of crossing new thresholds and opening new doors to projects and problems in financial management hasn’t subsided.

It was indeed quite an experience therefore to meet Professor Dick Davies who further spurred in me interest and commitment. I discovered that we happily shared much the same views about the financial sector— his more academic and professional, mine rather grounded in early experience and not quit professional or seasoned.

The SFM module basically dealt with the treatment of mergers and acquisitions, private equity and leveraged buyouts in addition to capital structure theory and EVA performance management. As a part of the assignment for this course, we analysed two very interesting case studies. In my opinion, case studies are the best way to apply the knowledge one has learnt. The real testing ground is of course the floor of the business house and the bourse, but cases assume a challenging character in academic analysis and discussion. Besides case studies, our team analysed the current financial issue of the leveraged buyout of Dell, and the power-struggle of the owner to keep his namesake company. Finally, we also looked into the corporate governance issues of Dell which had apparently left its shareholders and Carl Icahn livid!

In the SFS module, the cohort learnt the valuation of bonds, the technicalities of determining interest rates, reviewing the portfolio theory along with the asset pricing models. A very interesting and appealing part of the assignment was to analyse the current interest rates of a country and comment on the future outlook of them. Our team analysed the interest rates of the United States (a country whose economic fortunes I had been following very closely since most of my earlier professional work involved dealing with CDO trustees on the Wall Street).

I daresay that the knowledge and experience I garnered from the SFM and SFS courses are tremendous and I am eager to harness much of what is practically useful of these in my work life. My recommendation for these courses is therefore unreserved. They are the best bet for anyone looking for demanding and rewarding electives, especially for those for whom Finance is great passion.”