HSBC to open Australian private banking office

HSBC is honing in on Australia's 29,500 high net worth individuals (HNWI), announcing the opening of a private banking office in Australia which is offering services to ‘sophisticated' investors with investable assets over $10 million.

HSBC regional head of global private banking for Asia-Pacific, Bernard Rennell, said the bank hoped to reach a particular investor base and help boost the number of domestic HNWIs.

"As Australia's HNW population continues to rise, with forecasts to grow 17.8 per cent by 2023, we aim to appeal to an increasingly sophisticated investor base," he said.

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"We have been serving the needs of wealthy families across the region for many generations...who want to diversify their portfolios, tap into international connectivity and access a broader range of products and services."

Australian clients new to the private bank in Australia would gain access to the capabilities available through HSBC Private Bank's offices in Hong Kong or Singapore. HSBC Australia chief executive, Tony Cripps, said that Australia's status as the third largest nation of HNWIs in the Asia-Pacific had labelled it a priority.

"Australia is a priority growth market for HSBC...we anticipate significant growth from being able to offer a comprehensive private banking experience," he said.

"HSBC has achieved strong growth in Australia over the past five years; and private banking is a natural step."

For resident clients, there would also be access to investment services, equities and fixed income; as well as banking and lending services including deposit accounts, foreign exchange, and online transactional banking. Structured products and derivatives would also be available.

HSBC managing director, Hayden Matthews, will lead the private banking business across Australia, in the role of head of private banking. Matthews formerly worked with JP Morgan in Singapore and across Australia and Asia in various roles with Deutsche Bank.

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