ANZ's Wealth Chief On Vontobel Alliance, Future Strategy

Chrissy Coleman Hong Kong 30 November 2012

ANZ's Wealth Chief On Vontobel Alliance, Future Strategy

Following the announcement of the partnership
between Australia-New Zealand bank, ANZ and Swiss private bank, Vontobel,  ANZ’s chief executive for private wealth
management disclosed big ambitions of becoming a “distinctive regional private
bank”. (To see an analysis of this deal, click here.)


Joyce Phillips spoke earlier
this week at an investor briefing in Sydney
to present the firm’s overall strategy. She began her address by saying that
ANZ hasn’t capatilised on the wealth opportunity thus far,
despite having heavily invested in its Asia
wealth management capability through the purchase of RBS assets three years
ago. “Only 14 per cent of 3.7 million ANZ bank customers hold a wealth product
with us. This is behind our peers,” said Phillips.

She continued, expressing her target to increase
customer penetration to at least 19 per cent, in line with market leaders in
Australia: “On a global basis, wealth is rapidly shifting to Asia Pacific - in
five years, from 2011-2016, our region’s share of private wealth will increase
from 19 to 27 per cent. This clearly represents a tremendous opportunity to
leverage ANZ’s regional presence and in particular, to create a strong regional
private bank.”

Despite flat profit
growth year on year, the global wealth and private banking division’s performance
improved half on half, reflecting better performance in insurance and
investment earnings and a decline in costs as productivity benefits emerged,
said the firm at the briefing. The cost to income ratio improved half on half,
narrowing by 350 basis points to 56.3 per cent. Funds under management
increased 6 per cent, with New
Zealand in particular standing out,
attaining a 15 per cent increase.

In light of the division’s chief executive
acknowledging under delivery with regards to growth plans voiced in the past, she
said that this time: “We now have a clear plan to execute against this
opportunity, and I’m inviting you to track us, rather than trusting us to
deliver this”.

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