Julius Baer expands private banking with new hires

The bank adds four senior bankers from UBS and two others to boost its Southeast Asia business.
Julius Baer has poached four new relationship managers from UBS, in an attempt to boost its wealth management business in Southeast Asia. The bank has also appointed a new human resources specialist.

Swiss-based Julius Baer was the fastest growing finance-banking services company in Singapore in 2007 based on a three-year compounded annual growth rate, according to a spokesperson. The bank increased its assets under management by 12% to CHF406 billion ($365 billion) and net profit by 28% to CHF518 million in the first half of 2007. The groupÆs interim report also states that growth markets, Asia in particular, continued to show strong inflows.

Michael de Santiesteban, most recently a desk head for the South Asian market with UBS in Singapore, has joined the bank as team head and managing director of marketing for Southeast Asia. He brings along three ex-UBS team mates to Julius Baer: Thitima Chuntamongkol, who has already started, and Jan Philip Dirkman and Theekaroj Piampongsarn, who will join later this year. These three bankers will report to Santiesteban, who in turn will report to Heinz Puth, Julius BaerÆs head of marketing in Southeast Asia.

In addition Christina Ng, formerly with BNP Paribas, has also joined the team, reporting to Puth. All new hires will be based in Singapore and oversee the region.

The new bankers are all senior hires with extensive experience in the industry as well as the region. Chuntamongkol has over 20 yearsÆ experience in the financial services industry, including asset management and investment banking; Ng has more than 15 yearsÆ of banking experience in the region, including her years at BNP Paribas Private Bank where she managed ultra high net-worth clients. Prior to that, she was a desk head for Thailand at BNP Paribas.

Apart from adding the relationship managers, the bank has also appointed Jeffrey Chiam as head of human resources and a member of the Singapore management committee. He reports to Markus Kobler, chief operating officer of the bank. Before joining Julius Baer Chiam worked with ING Asia Private Bank as regional human resources manager covering Asia and the Middle East and with JPMorgan as country human resources manager.

ôThese are veteran bankers with many years of experience in the financial services industry and unrivalled market knowledge and connections,ö says Wilfried Kofmehl, chief executive officer Singapore and head of Southeast Asia at Julius Baer. ôWe are confident they will help us continue to strengthen our position in the region.ö

Hiring entire teams from other banks is a speedier and more effective way for private banks to boost their business and the strategy is increasingly becoming a trend. Last November ABN AMRO poached six private bankers from HSBC to cover China and Taiwan and in April Deutsche Bank poached 18 private bankers from Citi to join its Singapore wealth management team.
¬ Haymarket Media Limited. All rights reserved.
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