Pioneering India Focused

Pioneering India
Focused

Shari'a Compliant & Ethical Investing

Shari'a Compliant &
Ethical Investing

About

Zamzam Capital LLP is a Shari’a-compliant investment management firm, which advocates a specialized and ethical approach to wealth management and investment strategies in accordance with Islamic principles. We prioritize investments in businesses that comply with Islamic ethics, such as those involved in halal industries, while adhering to principles of risk-sharing and asset-backed financing. By striking a balance between financial goals and ethical principles, Zamzam Capital offers a unique avenue for responsible and sustainable wealth growth for those seeking to invest within the framework of the Shari’a.

Grounded in the tenets of Shari’a law, we guide individuals and institutions to make the right investment decisions in India that align with Islamic values, ensuring that investments are ethically sourced and structured to avoid prohibited elements such as interest (riba), excessive uncertainty (gharar) and gambling (maysir)

Vision

Indian Muslims are known to be among the most financially backward and excluded groups in the country and by virtue of being the largest minority community, the economic development of the Indian Muslim community is a key driver to aid India’s overall economic development and in meeting the target of a $10 trillion economy by 2030. 

In this regard, Indian Muslims are even more under-represented in the financial markets, which given that India is now the 5th largest stock market and one that is among the most favored Emerging Markets by global investors is a huge opportunity for the community to squander.. This is because most Indian Muslims still do not have access to both accurate Islamic financial education, including knowledge of the key tenets of halal investments and even a basic understanding of the capital markets.

Moreover, observant Muslims tend to shy away from the financial markets because they do not want to invest in forbidden (haram) assets unintentionally, which is very true if even one of the key principles of halal investments are violated. As a result, most Muslims are not enjoying the same financial rewards that non-Muslims are reaping by participating in the financial markets. 

To address this problem, Zamzam Capital is proud to remove a key bottleneck that many investors in the community face by providing an authentic and certified updated halal list of stocks for the Indian market on a completely free basis for the benefit of the community. We hope this initiative will go a long way to improve the overall participation of the community in the Indian capital markets and drive their financial inclusion as they are able to invest in larger numbers as per the dictates of their faith.

Team

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Saif Ahmed

Managing Partner

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Shafik Ahmed

Partner

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Mujahid Ahmed

Investment Advisor

Shari'a Board

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Mufti Asadullah Qasmi

Shari’a Board Member

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Mufti Ibrahim Essa

Shari’a Board Member

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Mufti Mohammad Yahya Qasmi

Shari’a Board Member

All our activities are certified as Sharia compliant on an ongoing basis by the Sharia Board of Infinity Consultants

Halal Investing

Historically, the focus of halal and haram has been most prominent when it comes to food, but the concept of halal and haram must also be applied to all things beyond food including lifestyle, finances, investments, and business. As the Muslim population globally continues to grow, so too does the appetite for investing as per Shari’a norms or halal investing. Halal investing is driven by the Shari’a guidance. Shari’a is a wholesome investing module that looks at investments through multiple lenses and has parallels with many investment strategies such as ESG, impact investing, socially responsible investing and ethical investing.

‍Halal is a word in Shari’a which means lawful and permissible. Halal investing is simply investing according to the guidance found in Islam. This guidance is derived from the primary sources of Islam, the revealed word of Allah, the Qur’an, and the teachings and guidance from the final Prophet, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. (pbuh)

Halal investing requires the investor to know all about investment products and understand how they work and only then would it be possible to assess if the investment is in line with Islamic finance principles. For Muslims, one of the most critical aspects of Shari’a law is ensuring that all income sources are halal. Islamic finance places huge importance on ensuring that income is halal (legitimate) and this is enshrined in the Holy Quran. It would not be inaccurate or exaggerating if it was said that Halal investing incorporates all of these factors. Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 728AH/1328CE) states:

“Shari’a was revealed to establish and perfect that which is beneficial and to prevent and eliminate that which is harmful.” [Fatawa ibn Taymiyyah]

Shari’a law lays down principles and regulations Muslim investors must comply with if they want to invest in halal products. According to Shari’a rules, compliance with Islamic finance principles leads to a more ethical and just society. This goes against the western notion that making money is the ultimate aim for investors where one party benefits at the expense of others due to the key evils undermining conventional banking & finance, namely interest, excessive uncertainty and gambling. Whilst Islamic finance does not prohibit making money, it does place emphasis on ethics, justice and mutual benefit, so that a balance is achieved between religion, family, life, intellect, and property. Thus, halal investments encourage Muslims to invest responsibly and always ethically. It is still very possible to make money ethically with the right investments.

7 Key Principles

‍Halal investing has 7 key principles with very clear indicators and signs, which can be summarized as follows:

Halal investments must avoid earning or paying interest, as it is considered usurious and exploitative under Shari’a.

Halal investments focus on companies and sectors that are deemed ethical and socially responsible. They avoid investing in companies involved in harmful activities, such as gambling, alcohol, tobacco, pornography, or weapons manufacturing.

Halal investments should not involve excessive uncertainty or risk, speculation, or deceit. Investing or partaking in any short-selling or uncertain contracts are forbidden in accordance with Islamic finance principles. Transactions should be transparent, and all parties must have a clear understanding of the terms and conditions of the investment.

Shari’a law prohibits speculation or gambling. So, if any form of investing includes contracts where the ownership is dependent on events in the future that are uncertain, this is deemed to be precarious. Thus investments in swaps, futures, derivatives or options, CDOs, CFDs, etc. are not permissible.

Halal investments can never have their principal amount invested guaranteed under any circumstances (no capital protection)

Halal investments need to result in full ownership and constructive possession to the investor for their returns to be permissible. Thus short selling and intraday trading are not permissible.

Returns from Halal investments can only be forecasted as expected returns and can never be fixed as there will always be an element of risk that can lead to a loss or lower than forecasted returns.

Conclusion

‍‍In the final analysis, Halal investing emerges not just as a religious obligation for Muslims, but a comprehensive, ethical investment framework that brings together financial performance and societal benefits. Its alignment with sustainable and responsible investing, its focus on real economic sectors, and its emphasis on financial justice make it a compelling investment strategy for anyone seeking to combine financial returns with ethical considerations. Whether you are a Muslim aiming to align your investments with your faith, or a non-Muslim investor seeking a moral compass for your financial choices, Halal investing provides a robust, ethical path to wealth creation. As we navigate the complex world of investing, let’s remember that making money and making a positive difference are not mutually exclusive – and Halal investing is a testament to that belief.

Services

Halal is a word in Shari’a which means lawful and permissible. Halal investing is simply investing according to the guidance found in Islam. This guidance is derived from the primary sources of Islam, the revealed word of Allah, the Qur’an, and the teachings and guidance from the final Prophet, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. (pbuh)

Historically, the focus of halal and haram has been most prominent when it comes to food, but the concept of halal and haram must also be applied to all things beyond food including lifestyle, finances, investments, and business. As the Muslim population globally continues to grow, so too does the appetite for investing as per Shari’a norms or halal investing. Halal investing is driven by the Shari’a guidance. Shari’a is a wholesome investing module that looks at investments through multiple lenses and has parallels with many investment strategies such as ESG, impact investing, socially responsible investing and ethical investing.

Advisory

Advisory services involve providing financial advice and recommendations to clients. Financial advisors assess a client’s financial situation, goals, risk tolerance, and investment preferences to offer guidance on investment decisions.

Training

Training services in the financial context refer to educational programs, courses, or workshops designed to enhance an individual’s or a group’s knowledge and skills in managing finances and investments.

Portfolio Management

Portfolio management involves the active management of an investment portfolio on behalf of an individual or institutional client. Portfolio managers make investment decisions, including asset allocation, security selection, and risk management.

Screening Criteria

Given the variance in Shari’a screening methodologies for identifying permissible shares to invest in, Zamzam Capital is proud to use the exact Shari’a screening methodology as prescribed by Mufti Taqi Usmani, who is considered to be the key global authority in Islamic Banking & Finance.

In this regard, we use the following six screening criteria as approved by Mufti Taqi Usmani and our Shari’a Board while filtering for shares listed on the National Stock Exchange (NSE):

Core business of the company being invested in must be Halal and in line with the dictates of Shari’a. Hence, investment in securities of any company dealing in conventional banking & finance, conventional insurance, alcoholic drinks, tobacco, pork and other non-halal food products, gambling/gaming, music, movie production, selling of gold & silver jewelry on deferred basis, advertising, arms manufacturing, cloning and pornography or related activities is not permissible.
Note: In cases where the above the non-permissible business activities or sectors constitute less than 5% of total revenue of a company (this is known as the 5% rule) then such companies shall not be excluded from the Halal List.

Core business of the company being invested in must be Halal and in line with the dictates of Shari’a. Hence, investment in securities of any company dealing in conventional banking & finance, conventional insurance, alcoholic drinks, tobacco, pork and other non-halal food products, gambling/gaming, music, movie production, selling of gold & silver jewelry on deferred basis, advertising, arms manufacturing, cloning and pornography or related activities is not permissible.
Note: In cases where the above the non-permissible business activities or sectors constitute less than 5% of total revenue of a company (this is known as the 5% rule) then such companies shall not be excluded from the Halal List.

Debt to Total Asset ratio should be less than 33%. Debt, in this case, is classified as any interest bearing debts including conventional lease liabilities. Zero coupon bonds and preference shares are, both, by definition, part of debt.
Note: We use an even lower threshold of 33% Debt vs. 37% Debt used in the referenced Screening Criteria in the above ratio as per the guidelines of our Shari’a Board given that the Indian market just considering the NSE gives a large number of Shari’a compliant shares and thus a lower threshold of 33% is the correct ratio to be used for the Indian market.

The ratio of non-compliant Investments to Total Assets should be less than 33%. Investment in any non-compliant security shall be included for the calculation of this ratio.

The ratio of non-compliant Income to Total Revenue should be less than 5%. Total Revenue includes Gross Revenue plus any other Income earned by the company. 
Note: Non-compliant income below the above threshold should be purified by removing the relevant proportion from received dividends and donating the same to charity.

The ratio of Non-liquid Assets to Total Assets should be at least 25%. Non-liquid Assets, here are defined as any asset that Shari’a permits to be traded at value other than its par value.

The Market Capitalization should be greater than the Net Liquid Assets calculated as: (Total Assets – Non Liquid Assets – Current Liabilities) divided by the total number of shares outstanding.

Halal List

Our Shari’a screening is conducted on a quarterly basis after the market closes on the last trading day of each quarter and the resulting updated Halal List shall be published below. Presently only shares of those companies that are listed on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) and that have a current Market Capitalization greater than or equal to INR 500 Crores are considered.

Newsletter

ZamZam Capital provides a weekly newsletter to highlight our unique perspectives on the Indian stock market with our twin focus on growth oriented and Sharia compliance.

Contact

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