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Asia Wealth Management Executive Moves Roundup: April 2012

Tara Loader Wilkinson and Vanessa Doctor

4 May 2012

Here WealthBriefingAsia profiles the movers and shakers of the Asian wealth management industry during April 2012.

Australia and New Zealand Bank cut 230 positions from its underperforming wealth management unit as part of the 1,000 planned job cuts announced in February to reduce operating costs, the bank confirmed. The bank said it would try to find other jobs for the company for as many of the now-unemployed people.

HSBC named Stuart Milne as the new chief executive for its India business. Milne replaces Stuart Davis, who moves to another position within the firm. He was previously the country manager for Japan. In this new role, he works closely with Naina Lal Kidwai, director at HSBC Asia-Pacific and country head of the bank in India.

ABN AMRO, the Dutch Lender, hired Daniel Teo as country chief operating officer for Singapore and COO of private banking for Asia. Teo was previously regional COO and managing director at Bank of Singapore.

Acadian Asset Management Australia named Andrew Hair as new chief executive, from his previous role as the acting chief for the firm. He replaced Chris Clayton who left in March to become head of asset management sales. Hair joined Acadian in 2007.

Macquarie Private Wealth promoted one of its senior vice president and portfolio manager, Mike Philbrick, as branch manager for a new office in Toronto, ON. He will lead a team of advisors as the firm makes further hires there.

Franklin Templeton Investments named Stuart Devlin as southern regional manager of the retail division. Previously he was head of retail sales for ING investment management and also served as state manager for AXA Australia.

Australian fund manager Hyperion Asset Management promoted Tim Samway as managing director replacing Dr Emmanuel Pohl, the founder of Hyperion. Pohl has left the asset management unit to focus on the newly spun-off private equity business. Samway is the institutional business director and founding shareholder of Hyperion.

Multiport’s managing director and founder John McIlroy is leaving the business in June and will be replaced by Libby Roy, previously the head of financial planning at ipac, the wealth management unit of AMP.

Mirae Asset Global Investments appointed Jung Ho Rhee as a chief executive for Hong Kong, replacing Woong Park, who resigned for personal reasons. Rhee was previously a senior executive director at Mirae Asset.

Australia and New Zealand Bank hired Richard Yetsenga as head of global markets research, while Li-Gang Liu became chief economist, China. Yetsenga was previously the head of foreign exchange research and will be based in Sydney, where he will oversee all of the firm's research unit, including FX, rates and commodities teams. Liu used to be head of Greater China economics and is now responsible for developing the Greater China economics team, covering China, Taiwan and Hong Kong.

JP Morgan announced its global investment banking chief Jeff Urwin will take on the additional role as chief of Asia-Pacific, and relocate to Hong Kong. He is currently head of global investment banking coverage, capital markets and mergers & acquisitions.

Fangda Partners is opening an office in Hong Kong and hired Peter Yuen to lead it. He moves from UK firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer where he served as Hong Kong-based partner since 2007.

Isle of Man-based ILS Group hired Cindy Cheng and Ruth Guo as office representatives for Shanghai and Beijing, assisting Noe Benziane, the director of ILS Fiduciaries (Asia), in delivering ILS products and services to professional and high net worth clients.

Executive search firm Korn/Ferry International named Navnit Singh as chairman and country head of India in 3 May, also functioning as global technology market leader for the unit. He joined from rival Heidrich & Struggles.

Liechtenstein-based VP Bank appointed Reto Isenring in the newly created role of chief operating officer and deputy chief executive. He was previously interim CEO of the bank's Singapore branch, pending the appointment of Ian Pollock, who now officially takes over as CEO of VP Bank Singapore, in addition to his leadership role in Hong Kong. Pollock has headed VP Bank Group's activities in the Asia-Pacific region since 1 January 2012.

Singapore-based hedge fund Dymon Asia Capital hired Jay Luo as president and partner. He starts in June and will oversee risk management and operations from the Hong Kong office. Luo was previously the head of SAC Capital Advisors in Asia-Pacific.

The third and final member of management consultant Mercer’s Singapore-based wealth management team, Iris Kao, left last month for a private bank. Kao was principal consultant on the team, reporting to Hansi Mehrotra, Asia-Pacific head of wealth management consulting, who left in December.

Nomura named Nobuhiro Sano as head of wealth management for Singapore, replacing Tsukasa Miyachi, who resurfaced last month at Barclays. Sano was transferred from Shanghai, where he was chief representative of the bank’s Shanghai office. He reports to Koki Miura, head of Asia-ex Japan for the division.

Credit Suisse added Chew Soon Gek as head of strategy and economic research in the private bank, Asia-Pacific, based in Singapore. She joined from the recently-merged Clariden Leu, where she was the head of portfolio management and investment strategy Asia from 2009. Kum Soek Ching also rejoined Credit Suisse as head of Southeast Asia equity research, based in Singapore, reporting to Chew, after a year's absence. 

The head of Southeast Asia for Coutts, former UBS-banker Manfred Liechti, left after two years, to be replaced by the bank’s global non-resident India head Ranjit Khanna, effective immediately. Based in Singapore, Khanna will lead teams of private bankers responsible for high net worth clients in Singapore and Southeast Asia.

Meanwhile the UK private bank said it was looking to bolster its products and services business in Asia by hiring 10 senior bankers within the next few months. It also is looking to grow its Asia philanthropy and family office business division.

Tyndall Asset Management, the Australian advisor owned by Japan’s Nikko Asset Management, named Mike Davis as the new managing director. Davis takes over from Craig Hobart, who resigned. He joined from Causeway Asset Management, an alternative asset management firm he co-founded in 2004, and now reports to Charles Beazely, chief executive of Nikko AM.

CIMB Group Holdings, the Malaysian financial group, appointed Renzo Christopher Viegas as the new group deputy chief executive and head of consumer banking for CIMB Bank, the firm's banking subsidiary. Viegas was previously the deputy CEO for retail and international at RHB Bank. He also assumes the position of executive director of CIMB Bank.

Sarasin hired Timon Tam to the newly-created role of head of investment consulting for the North Asia business. Tam brings 25 years of private banking experience to the role and reports to Damien Ng, head of investment consulting, Asia.

BNP Paribas Investment Partners named David Grybas the new chief executive for Australia. Grybas replaced Robert Harrison, who moved to New York to become head of the North American business. He was previously the co-head of institutional business development.

Boyden, the recruiter, appointed Peter Dale as executive director for its expanding Australian franchise. In this role, Dale takes the responsibility of recruiting for senior executive and functional leader roles for financial services, professional services and non-profit institutions in Australia and internationally.

The Government of Singapore Investment Corp appointed Lim Chow Kiat as deputy chief investment officer, in addition to his role as president of GIC Asset Management. In this expanded position, he assists Ng Kok Song, GIC CIO, in building group investment policies and strategies. 

MLC, the wealth arm of National Australia Bank, chose Delaware Investments as its new sub-advisor to help manage the around $1 billion worth of equities in its portfolio. Delaware, led by Jeffrey Van Harte, replaces Capital International.

The Bennelong Group, the Australian investment and fund management firm, named Michaet Pratt as non-executive director for the board and director of the Bennelong Foundation. Pratt joined from Standard Chartered Bank where he was head of consumer and small and medium businesses banking for Northeast Asia. 

Bank of America Merrill Lynch asked around 32 employees at its wealth management unit in India to leave as the stock market slowdown worsened and the economy continued to be sluggish. The affected employees included some advisors and support staff.

Fullerton Securities & Wealth Advisory appointed Rajnish Kumar as chief executive for India. Kumar used to be the head of the firm's wealth management business and growth strategy for India. He joined the company in 2008 as founder member.

BNP Paribas Wealth Management hired Akshay Jaitly as head of non resident Indians for North Asia. Jaitly was previously the global head of private banking at Axis Bank and joined the French bank in late March 2012. He reports to Stephanie Honig, head of Indian markets. 

BNY Mellon named Chong Jin Leow country executive and general manager of the Singapore office. Leow succeeded Jai Aya, who now focuses on his role as head of the global sovereign institutions group. Leow, previously the head of Asia-Pacific asset servicing, continues to report to Tim Kearney, vice chairman of BNY Mellon and chief executive of BNY Mellon Asset Servicing. He now also reports to Steve Lackey, chairman of Asia-Pacific.

Macquarie Investment Management Australia made four Europe-based hires, taking the headcount in the region to 14. Jerry Devlin joined as head of UK financial institutions, Richard Guerin as head of European consultants relations, Xavier Michel as manager of pooled funds, and Kate Giblin as manager in the sales and marketing support team. The firm said the appointments reflect the firm’s growth in Europe.

Former Standard Chartered global head of financial markets sales David Carr joined Australian and New Zealand Banking Group to fill the newly-created role of global head of sales, based in Singapore. He reports to Steve Bellotti, managing director for global markets. 

Merlon Capital Partners, the Australian boutique fund management firm, announced plans to add a new portfolio manager effective June. The role will be filled by Adrian Lemme, who moves from AMP Capital. With this hire, Merlon Capital effectively brings its total Australian equities fund management team to seven.

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, the US-based law firm, appointed Zhan Chen as partner based in Shanghai. Chen will be dividing her time between the Shanghai and Hong Kong offices, focusing on private equity, going-private transactions and M&A. She joined from Davis Polk & Wardwell where she worked for 10 years. 

Australian investment manager AMP announced the departure of John McIlroy, the founder and managing director of subsidiary Multiport to "pursue other opportunities." Libby Roy, previously head of financial planning at ipac, another AMP division, took over the role.

Squire Sanders, the Ohio law firm, expanded its Asian franchise with a new Singapore office. The local team is led by Ignatius Hwang, along with three lawyers. The firm opened a similar office in Hong Kong in February and said it is mulling the launch of a Korea branch in the next months. 

Equity Trustees, the Victoria-based wealth manager, named Anna Hacker to the newly-created role of senior manager - estate planning. Hacker joined from Moores Legal where she was provided legal advice to accounts and financial planners. At her new post, she reports to Lachlan Wraith, head of personal estates and trusts. 

Mirae Asset Global Investments announced Jisang Yoo as its new chief executive for India. Yoo replaced Arindam Gosh. She was was previously the chief financial officer for the firm. 

Coutts hired three executives for its Asia business. Edouard Hoepffner joined as executive director and head of new product development and client solutions, Elaine Ngim stepped in as director and head of fixed income, while Kieran Calder became director and head of equities. All three are based in Singapore. Hoepffner now reports to Ranjit Khanna, interim head of products and services for Asia, while Ngim and Calder both report to Coutts’ chief investment officer for Asia, Norman Villamin.