The Start of a Rare, Specialized Agribusiness Investment Banking Firm
Christopher R. Narayanan, CEO, founded C.R. Narayanan & Co. in 2017, initially using the name GA Capital for this rare, specialized agribusiness investment banking firm.
Chris’s credibility and reputation in agribusiness has grown over multiple decades through a varied, ever-evolving career path.
His love for, and knowledge in, the agricultural industry began in his younger days, working as a Texas ranch hand to help fund his education while attending Texas A&M University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences for both his B.S. (Agricultural Economics) and M.S. (Rangeland Ecology & Management) degrees and competing on the Texas A&M rodeo team.
After finishing his military service in the U.S. Marine Corps and the Marine Corps Reserve, Chris launched his private-sector career working for agricultural consultancies, brokerages, and storied agribusiness [John] Deere & Co. During this time, Chris also continued his studies with the Working Professional MBA program at the University of Texas at Austin.
Prior to graduation, Chris turned to Wall Street, working and consulting for private equity and hedge funds, as well as the investment banks of Morgan Stanley and Société Générale (Soc Gen) in New York City; the latter of which where he was named Head of Agricultural Commodities Research.
While at Soc Gen, he more than doubled the bank’s agricultural commodities coverage providing price forecasts for 13 commodities, backed up investment banking teams with robust knowledge and insight that informed M&A deals, financing packages, and valuations, and contributed to the development and marketing of new commodity index investment banking products with Soc Gen’s structured products group. His global macroeconomic view of agribusiness provided Soc Gen’s clients with a holistic perspective on the interconnections between agriculture and “outside markets.”
Throughout his career, Chris has considerable experience in valuing agricultural, metals/mining, and alternative energy companies and enterprises – both public and private – to gauge the suitability for possible investment. He has gained extensive experience in commodity, equity, and business analysis and is regularly sought after for comments by the media and as an industry guest speaker.
Among his honors, Chris led Soc Gen to a #1 ranking in agricultural commodities research across all global investment banks, brokers, and dealers in 2016, up from #5 in 2014, according to the annual client-based Commodities Rankings survey conducted by Risk & Energy Risk magazine. In 2017, Chris was inducted into the Tyrus R. Timm Honor Registry, the highest award given to former students of the Department of Agricultural Economics at Texas A&M University.
Chris firmly believes in giving back. He is a member of the College of Agriculture Development Council at the Texas A&M Foundation and a frequent guest lecturer and mentor at Texas A&M University for both undergraduate and graduate students. He is also a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and enjoys mentoring military veterans as they transition back into civilian life.
Chris is Series 7, 63, and 79 licensed.