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RBC Buys LatAM, African, Caribbean Private Banking Business From UK Firm

Tom Burroughes , Group Editor, 20 March 2012

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Royal Bank of Canada said today that its global wealth division RBC Wealth Management will acquire the Latin American, Caribbean and African private banking business of Coutts, the wealth division of Royal Bank of Scotland Group.

Royal Bank of Canada
said today that its global wealth division RBC Wealth Management will acquire
the Latin American, Caribbean and African
private banking business of Coutts, the wealth division of Royal Bank of
Scotland Group.

The business has client assets in excess of $2 billion, RBC
said in a statement. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The deal is
expected to be closed in the latter part of the second quarter of this year.

“This business represents an excellent opportunity to
increase our market share with high net worth and ultra high net worth clients
in key high-growth markets while delivering very attractive returns,” said
George Lewis, group head, RBC Wealth Management.

The business to be acquired includes clients who reside in
Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa, as well as key private banking staff
based primarily in Geneva, Switzerland and also includes a team in the Cayman Islands, RBC said.

“Our Geneva-based business has built a reputation for
serving the often complex needs of emerging market clients,” said Karen
Simpson, general manager and head of private banking, Royal Bank of Canada (Suisse)
“This acquisition will enable us to increase our client base significantly in
these three important target regions.”

Shifting focus

Coutts said this business has total client assets of £1.5
billion, accounting for only 2 per cent of all its assets.

The firm said the decision to exit the markets “follows a
careful strategic review which was initiated earlier last year by Rory Tapner,
CEO, wealth division of Royal Bank of Scotland Group.”

Coutts is concentrating on geographies including the UK, Switzerland,
Middle East, Russia/CIS
and selected countries in Asia.

“We have made substantial progress executing against our
strategic growth plan over the last year, as evidenced by our recent financial
results. Our Latin American, Caribbean and African business is solid.  However, it requires further investment to
reach our preferred market share and we have determined to focus our efforts on
our core markets as mentioned above,” he said.

“In RBC Wealth Management, we have found a private wealth
manager who is committed to growing their business in these markets over the
long term,” he added.

 

 

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