Extracurriculars at Uni: NTU's Nanyang Capital
Bryan Hang is the Co-President at Nanyang Technological University’s (NTU) Nanyang Capital. He is a final year Economics student at NTU. Before entering University, he had already aimed to enter the finance industry, leading to him taking on multiple Investment Banking internships to gain real-world working experience during his course of University. He joined Nanyang Capital in his first year at University and has been with the club since.
Joining Nanyang Capital | The Application Process
What is Nanyang Capital?
Nanyang Capital is a finance club in Nanyang Technological University (NTU) that aims to impart fundamental stock-picking and practical investment management skills to its members. Boasting a tight-knit community, Nanyang Capital has a strong culture of giving back, supported by their dedicated senior members.
Why Nanyang Capital?
In my first year of university, I heard about Nanyang Capital from my seniors and the values that resonate with the club. Knowing that seniors and alumni have done well in their careers despite the club’s young age (founded in 2016), I decided to apply to Nanyang Capital.
Joining Nanyang Capital | The Application Process
What is the application process to Nanyang Capital like?
The application process is split into two rounds. In the first round, applicants are required to submit their CV and a guided investment paper. The investment paper is a simplified stock pitch with questions designed to guide the applicants in thinking about companies and tackling a stock pitch. Subsequently, the club’s senior members will conduct an interview to understand applicants better and determine if they will be a good fit for the club.
Could you elaborate on what the applicants can expect from the application rounds?
Freshmen who apply are typically not expected to have any finance-related experience given that they have just enrolled in University. However, second or third-year applicants will be benchmarked against our analysts or senior analysts.
In the guided investment paper, applicants will have to pitch a “buy” or “sell” call from a list of shortlisted companies. The application panel will then evaluate applicants’ thought process behind each stock buy/sell call recommendation.
During the interview, applicants will be asked higher-order questions regarding the guided investment paper they submitted. This is done to assess their understanding and conviction of the stock that they have chosen alongside their rationale behind the pitch. The club also looks favourably upon applicants who display their business acumen, interest in finance and commitment.
Behind the Scenes
What is a typical week in the life of a member of Nanyang Capital?
New members will undergo an intensive 9-week training program where they are exposed to fundamental analysis, financial analysis, and valuation methodologies (e.g. DCF/ Trading Comps/ Asset-based valuation). Members will also get the chance to listen to stock pitch presentations by our senior members during the training sessions. At the end of the training, under the guidance of a senior, members will be required to put together a stock pitch presentation as a group.
Nanyang Capital also hosts fireside chats and alumni sharing sessions where professionals are invited to share their experiences with the club. Juniors have given feedback that such events are extremely valuable because they can gain insights directly from industry specialists.
What competitions did you participate in and what did you learn from them?
One of the most memorable competitions that I joined was CFA Institute Research Challenge, where our team pitched a “buy” call on Sea Ltd and their share price has rallied by almost 8x since. While it was definitely rewarding to see your investment theses play out, the biggest takeaway was the camaraderie that we forged over this competition from the late nights we pulled together as a team of five.
How would you advise freshmen looking to join an academic CCA in University?
As a freshman, it is natural to be overwhelmed by the myriad of opportunities in University. It is up to individuals to make the most out of their experience in University – joining an academic CCA might not be everyone’s priority. If one is still hesitating, reflect on if it is something one can commit for at least a year before applying, as all CCAs require a certain level of commitment.
If one believes that a career in finance is something of interest, consider applying to a finance CCA. Take the time to speak to the representatives from the different finance CCAs offered in University to determine which is the best fit. There is no “best” CCA – only a CCA that is best-suited for the individual.
How can members make the most of the opportunities at Nanyang Capital?
Members should focus on learnability – be willing to take the opportunity to ask questions during training and presentations. This way, they can understand training materials and presentations at a deeper level. Members should also develop a genuine interest in the well-being of the people around them. By developing awareness of others’ needs, they can forge strong and trusting relationships. With these two traits, every other skill set can be learned easily. In addition, members are encouraged to join more competitions together to hone and put into practice their stock-picking and pitching skills.
Last but not least, would you have done anything differently?
Looking back at the past three years in University, Nanyang Capital is definitely one of the highlights. I have gained tremendously from surrounding myself with like-minded peers in Nanyang Capital and developed professionally in ways I would not have imagined. The friendships I gained from Nanyang Capital are irreplaceable, regardless of my eventual career choice. If given a choice to redo my University life, I would apply to Nanyang Capital again – ten times out of ten.