Her love for markets led her to found the country’s leading institutional brokerage: Meet First Global’s Devina Mehra
This IIM-A gold medalist had a seven-year-long stint at Citibank before co-founding India’s leading institutional brokerage firm, First Global. Devina Mehra’s illustrious career path definitely provides enough material for a blockbuster thriller. First Global, like many other things in the early 1990s, is a child of liberalisation.
She has always had unstinting support from her husband and business partner Shankar Mehra, but she says that there is a long, grinding wait before one sees the smallest affirmation of success. Things are never smooth and never go exactly as you plan them but you have to keep going. “You also have to play to your strengths,” she says.
Once Devina and Shankar had entrenched themselves in the Indian market, they started their journey to the global market. She didn’t let others’ opinions stand in her way and went on to set up the firm in the US. With focus on large caps, the firm opened up a whole new market and the two became thought leaders in a few of the segments. The late Alan Abelson, legendary columnist of Barron’s, once wrote in his column, “By and large, First Global’s reports are quite credible, and on occasion, more than that.” First Global today provides coverage on stocks across US and Europe and is the only Indian brokerage house listed by Asiamoney among Asia’s top 10 international research houses since 2000.
She is an ardent believer in hard work, deep thinking and Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000 hour rule to master a skill. A voracious reader, Mehra describes her reading as quite eclectic. Besides reading, she enjoys travelling. Her advice for entrepreneurs, “Don’t let other people’s opinion about you impact your performance.”