Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy Net Present Value (NPV) / MBA Resources

Introduction to Net Present Value (NPV) - What is Net Present Value (NPV) ? How it impacts financial decisions regarding project management?

NPV solution for Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy case study

At Oak Spring University, we provide corporate level professional Net Present Value (NPV) case study solution. Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy case study is a Harvard Business School (HBR) case study written by Ravi Anshuman, Mitra Saby. The Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy (referred as “Risk Fullerton” from here on) case study provides evaluation & decision scenario in field of Finance & Accounting. It also touches upon business topics such as - Value proposition, Emerging markets, Motivating people, Performance measurement, Risk management.

The net present value (NPV) of an investment proposal is the present value of the proposal’s net cash flows less the proposal’s initial cash outflow. If a project’s NPV is greater than or equal to zero, the project should be accepted.

NPV = Present Value of Future Cash Flows LESS Project’s Initial Investment

Case Description of Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy Case Study

In the aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008, Fullerton India Credit Company Limited, a non-banking finance company, faced a dismal future. Weak credit issuance standards had exposed the company to significant risk and led its parent Temasek to inject new capital into the company to keep it afloat. The new CEO, Shantanu Mitra, embarked on a major restructuring exercise. First, he initiated a new credit appraisal system that centralized the credit underwriting process and simultaneously implemented significant cost reduction policies. Second, he recognized that the highly competitive nature of the Indian consumer and commercial loan markets compelled Fullerton to identify under-served segments with acceptable risk-return characteristics. He targeted the niche market segment of newly-emerging middle-class consumers who were being neglected by the formal banking system (because they found it difficult to accurately assess their credit risk) and also by microfinance institutions that mainly focused on the poorer sections of society. To achieve his goals, Mitra embraced a risk analytics framework to ensure that the credit underwriting process was not only compliant with Basel regulations but also consistent with the risk appetite articulated by the governing board. The case requires the student to discuss how the risk analytics framework can be used to drive strategic decisions about the composition of the lending portfolio (portfolio shape), the product-mix and the geographical-mix, without compromising on the risk appetite guidelines laid down by the board. Finally, the case also brings into focus issues related to organizational design, incentive mechanisms, and performance measurement.

Case Authors : Ravi Anshuman, Mitra Saby

Topic : Finance & Accounting

Related Areas : Emerging markets, Motivating people, Performance measurement, Risk management

Calculating Net Present Value (NPV) at 6% for Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy Case Study

Years              Cash Flow     Net Cash Flow     Cumulative    
Cash Flow
Discount Rate
@ 6 %
Cash Flows
Year 0 (10000010) -10000010 - -
Year 1 3454049 -6545961 3454049 0.9434 3258537
Year 2 3963601 -2582360 7417650 0.89 3527591
Year 3 3940235 1357875 11357885 0.8396 3308297
Year 4 3243251 4601126 14601136 0.7921 2568959
TOTAL 14601136 12663383

The Net Present Value at 6% discount rate is 2663373

In isolation the NPV number doesn't mean much but put in right context then it is one of the best method to evaluate project returns. In this article we will cover -

Different methods of capital budgeting

What is NPV & Formula of NPV,
How it is calculated,
How to use NPV number for project evaluation, and
Scenario Planning given risks and management priorities.

Capital Budgeting Approaches

Methods of Capital Budgeting

There are four types of capital budgeting techniques that are widely used in the corporate world –

1. Net Present Value
2. Payback Period
3. Profitability Index
4. Internal Rate of Return

Apart from the Payback period method which is an additive method, rest of the methods are based on Discounted Cash Flow technique. Even though cash flow can be calculated based on the nature of the project, for the simplicity of the article we are assuming that all the expected cash flows are realized at the end of the year.

Discounted Cash Flow approaches provide a more objective basis for evaluating and selecting investment projects. They take into consideration both –

1. Magnitude of both incoming and outgoing cash flows – Projects can be capital intensive, time intensive, or both. Risk Fullerton shareholders have preference for diversified projects investment rather than prospective high income from a single capital intensive project.
2. Timing of the expected cash flows – stockholders of Risk Fullerton have higher preference for cash returns over 4-5 years rather than 10-15 years given the nature of the volatility in the industry.

Formula and Steps to Calculate Net Present Value (NPV) of Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy

NPV = Net Cash In Flowt1 / (1+r)t1 + Net Cash In Flowt2 / (1+r)t2 + … Net Cash In Flowtn / (1+r)tn
Less Net Cash Out Flowt0 / (1+r)t0

Where t = time period, in this case year 1, year 2 and so on.
r = discount rate or return that could be earned using other safe proposition such as fixed deposit or treasury bond rate. Net Cash In Flow – What the firm will get each year.
Net Cash Out Flow – What the firm needs to invest initially in the project.

Step 1 – Understand the nature of the project and calculate cash flow for each year.
Step 2 – Discount those cash flow based on the discount rate.
Step 3 – Add all the discounted cash flow.
Step 4 – Selection of the project

Why Finance & Accounting Managers need to know Financial Tools such as Net Present Value (NPV)?

In our daily workplace we often come across people and colleagues who are just focused on their core competency and targets they have to deliver. For example marketing managers at Risk Fullerton often design programs whose objective is to drive brand awareness and customer reach. But how that 30 point increase in brand awareness or 10 point increase in customer touch points will result into shareholders’ value is not specified.

To overcome such scenarios managers at Risk Fullerton needs to not only know the financial aspect of project management but also needs to have tools to integrate them into part of the project development and monitoring plan.

Calculating Net Present Value (NPV) at 15%

After working through various assumptions we reached a conclusion that risk is far higher than 6%. In a reasonably stable industry with weak competition - 15% discount rate can be a good benchmark.

Years              Cash Flow     Net Cash Flow     Cumulative    
Cash Flow
Discount Rate
@ 15 %
Cash Flows
Year 0 (10000010) -10000010 - -
Year 1 3454049 -6545961 3454049 0.8696 3003521
Year 2 3963601 -2582360 7417650 0.7561 2997052
Year 3 3940235 1357875 11357885 0.6575 2590768
Year 4 3243251 4601126 14601136 0.5718 1854339
TOTAL 10445680

The Net NPV after 4 years is 445670

(10445680 - 10000010 )

Calculating Net Present Value (NPV) at 20%

If the risk component is high in the industry then we should go for a higher hurdle rate / discount rate of 20%.

Years              Cash Flow     Net Cash Flow     Cumulative    
Cash Flow
Discount Rate
@ 20 %
Cash Flows
Year 0 (10000010) -10000010 - -
Year 1 3454049 -6545961 3454049 0.8333 2878374
Year 2 3963601 -2582360 7417650 0.6944 2752501
Year 3 3940235 1357875 11357885 0.5787 2280229
Year 4 3243251 4601126 14601136 0.4823 1564068
TOTAL 9475171

The Net NPV after 4 years is -524839

At 20% discount rate the NPV is negative (9475171 - 10000010 ) so ideally we can't select the project if macro and micro factors don't allow financial managers of Risk Fullerton to discount cash flow at lower discount rates such as 15%.

Acceptance Criteria of a Project based on NPV

Simplest Approach – If the investment project of Risk Fullerton has a NPV value higher than Zero then finance managers at Risk Fullerton can ACCEPT the project, otherwise they can reject the project. This means that project will deliver higher returns over the period of time than any alternate investment strategy.

In theory if the required rate of return or discount rate is chosen correctly by finance managers at Risk Fullerton, then the stock price of the Risk Fullerton should change by same amount of the NPV. In real world we know that share price also reflects various other factors that can be related to both macro and micro environment.

In the same vein – accepting the project with zero NPV should result in stagnant share price. Finance managers use discount rates as a measure of risk components in the project execution process.

Sensitivity Analysis

Project selection is often a far more complex decision than just choosing it based on the NPV number. Finance managers at Risk Fullerton should conduct a sensitivity analysis to better understand not only the inherent risk of the projects but also how those risks can be either factored in or mitigated during the project execution. Sensitivity analysis helps in –

What can impact the cash flow of the project.

Understanding of risks involved in the project.

What will be a multi year spillover effect of various taxation regulations.

What are the key aspects of the projects that need to be monitored, refined, and retuned for continuous delivery of projected cash flows.

What are the uncertainties surrounding the project Initial Cash Outlay (ICO’s). ICO’s often have several different components such as land, machinery, building, and other equipment.

Some of the assumptions while using the Discounted Cash Flow Methods –

Projects are assumed to be Mutually Exclusive – This is seldom the came in modern day giant organizations where projects are often inter-related and rejecting a project solely based on NPV can result in sunk cost from a related project.

Independent projects have independent cash flows – As explained in the marketing project – though the project may look independent but in reality it is not as the brand awareness project can be closely associated with the spending on sales promotions and product specific advertising.

References & Further Readings

Ravi Anshuman, Mitra Saby (2018), "Fullerton: Risk Analytics and Business Strategy Harvard Business Review Case Study. Published by HBR Publications.