Even the intense heat of the Asian summer has not prevented Spy from getting out his magnifying glass and binoculars to share a few asset management snippets.
Spy has confirmed that Clara Colbourne has joined Standard Chartered Bank to oversee alternatives fund selection. She joins from Värde Partners, the specialist alternatives manager, with offices in the Minneapolis, London and Singapore. Clara is based in SC’s Singapore office and will be working with Alexis Calla, Dany Dupasquier and team.
Spy understands that Alex Kwan, HSBC’s former head fund influencer in Singapore, is going to resurface next week at another private bank in a similar role. Alex remained tight lipped about his new venue but some market participants were happy to speculate that a three-letter logo from a Swiss Bank was about to adorn his new business card.
HSBC’s asset management arm has also had some shuffling. Alison Brown will join HSBC GAM as director and head of sales for the wholesale business for Hong Kong and China, and Soren Beck-Petersen is now director and head of distribution for the private banking division in Asia-Pacific.
Standard Life Investments continues its rapid buildup of talent in Asia. Hard on the heels adding two multi-asset specialists, Spy notes that Jacqueline Wu has also joined their team recently in a business development role. Jaqueline was formerly at Manulife and Peak Capital.
Specialist fund manager VAM Funds, headquartered in Luxembourg, has hired a new regional sales manager based in Malaysia. Jason Humphreys joins the VAM team after years in the financial advisory sector. VAM recently announced a discretionary fund management service partnership with Close Brothers Asset Management.
Spy has come across relatively little new outdoor advertising this week. There is something noteworthy, however. Readers of Spy will recall that Singapore has a "Let’s influence UBS" advertising location in the basement of Raffles Place. Not to be outdone, Hong Kong has its own “Here we are, UBS” space. Across Victoria Harbour, on Kowloon side, UBS placed a huge top-of-skyscraper ad for itself; in front of it, close to the water, is a smaller building with digital display currently flashing between the names Eastspring and Prudential. No 10-year old Laphroaig single malt is needed to see the connection, the Spy notes.
Other than that, one lonely Manulife bus with a retirement planning campaign was spotted in the Lion City while Spy had a Hendrick’s gin and tonic with mandatory cucumber garnish. Perhaps the summer heat is keeping the asset management industry’s marketing teams in their air-conditioned offices?