Barclays beefs up its Asia research team

The UK-based bank appoints Sudeep Sarma as head of Asia research and Bhavtosh Vajpayee as head of equity research Asia ex-Japan.

Barclays has beefed up its research team in Asia by appointing Sudeep Sarma as head of Asia-Pacific research and Bhavtosh Vajpayee as head of equity research Asia ex-Japan.

The moves within the UK-based bank follow the appointment of Jon Scoffin to head of equity research, which will see him move to New York.

Scoffin effectively handled both roles following the departure of equity research head Stephen O’Sullivan in 2012, leaving that position vacant for two years.

Barclays told FinanceAsia that Scoffin was considered to have enough Asian experience to perform the two roles.

Sarma, who in his new role will lead Barclays’ economic and equity research teams in Asia-Pacific, will retain his role as global chief operating officer for research.

He will move from London to Singapore and continue to report to Larry Kantor, head of research.

Sarma joined Barclays in 2005 and has been in his current position since 2007. Prior to working at Barclays he worked as the Boston Consulting Group in London.

Vajpayee, meanwhile, will move from Mumbai to Hong Kong and manage teams based in Hong Kong, South Korea, India, Singapore and Taiwan.

He joined Barclays from CLSA in 2011 as head of equities, India. Prior to CLSA he worked at JM Morgan Stanley, a former joint venture of the US bank in India, in its corporate finance business.

Neither Sarma nor Vajpayee could be reached for comment.

Barclays told FinanceAsia that it does not expect Sarma and Vajpayee to arrive before mid-March but the new roles are effective immediately.

“Having Sudeep and Bhavtosh take on leading positions within Asia-Pacific research, together with the recent appointment of David Fernandez as head of FICC research, Asia-Pacific, adds further expertise and experience to a department with a strong track record of success,” Robert Morrice, chairman and chief executive of Barclays Asia-Pacific, said in a statement.

Fernandez joined the bank after spending 15 years at JP Morgan in New York and Singapore. He was most recently chief economist and head of market strategy for emerging Asia.

Scoffin began his Barclays career in commercial banking and joined the investment bank in 1998. He moved to Singapore in 2003 to head credit research and, in June 2006, he took control of the broader Asia-Pacific research team.

He helped to build the equity research team, which started in October 2008, and was appointed director of research for Asia-Pacific equities in addition to his broader role.

The moves continue the build-out of Barclays’ research team.

In September last year, the bank hired Paul Louie to head property equity research for Asia ex-Japan and appointed Alvin Wong as a director to lead its Chinese real estate coverage. Both analysts joined from Nomura.

Louie was given the title of managing director and reports to Scoffin, while Wong reports to Louie. Both are based in Hong Kong.


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