Tabei’s title is executive director of institutional clients and consultant relations.
Based in Hong Kong, he will be responsible for managing relationships with financial institutions, consultants and developing new distribution partnerships.
Previously, he was head of institutional business at Pine Bridge Investments, responsible for advising and acquiring new business from financial institutions including mega banks, insurers and specialised financial institutions and for advising large Japanese pension funds, the firm said.
Prior to that, he was head of institutional funds sales at Schroders Investment Management.
Japanese insitutional investors are looking beyond Japan sovereign bonds, some of which have negative interest rates.
“As the search for yield continues unabated, there is a strong demand from Japanese financial institutions for diversifying portfolios away from Japanese government bonds,” said Jürg Fritschi, deputy head for Asia-Pacific.
“Banks seek to strengthen their capabilities in investment grade corporates and look for reliable foreign partners in this field.
“On the equity side, Japanese pension funds and institutions are giving more attention to integrated ESG strategies. [W]ith this appointment, we are able to bring these capabilities to the demanding Japanese market.”
Several asset managment firms have made key Japan hires this year. In May, Blackrock hired a Japan chief investment officer and OMGI hired former Blackrock manager Rob Weatherston to run its Japanese equity fund out of Hong Kong and in April, T Rowe Price appointed a new country head for Japan.
In the first half of 2016, Japan accounted for $30bn net new inflows in Asia-Pacific funds.