Global lender opens banking business in Australia

One of the world’s largest banking groups has announced that it plans to offer private banking services to Australian resident clients.

Major international bank HSBC confirmed last month that it was gearing up for a return to the broker market in Australia, and had started recruiting for a number of key roles to service the channel, such as mortgage broker relationship manager and mortgage broker support officer. 

The bank has now announced plans to offer private banking services when it opens its new office in Australia, targeting High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) and family offices, with investable assets over $10 million. 

According to the World Wealth Report 2016 from business consultants Capgemini, Australia has the third largest population of HNWIs in Asia Pacific, with around 29,500 Australian households holding a net worth of over $10 million (according to ABS figures). 

Commenting on the plans, Tony Cripps, CEO of HSBC Australia, said: “Australia is a priority growth market for HSBC, and having a private bank office here will complement and enhance our existing retail, commercial and investment banking businesses. 

“HSBC has achieved strong growth in Australia over the past five years and private banking is a natural step to continue building our business and meeting our customers’ needs. 

“We anticipate significant growth from being able to offer a comprehensive private banking experience to both new and existing customers.” 

The bank has said that it will give Australian resident clients that are new to the private bank the option to “leverage the global presence and capabilities available through HSBC Private Bank’s offices in Hong Kong or Singapore” in a bid to offer a “comprehensive range of private banking services”. 

It added that the private banking team in Australia will collaborate with HSBC’s retail banking and wealth management, global banking and markets, and commercial banking businesses to “support the owners and principals of Australian businesses with their private wealth needs and facilitate introductions to relationship managers in Hong Kong or Singapore”. 

Australian resident private banking clients will have access to investment services, including discretionary investment management, equities, fixed income, structured products and derivatives; as well as banking and lending services, such as deposit accounts, foreign exchange, and online transactional banking. 

It added that, for mortgage-related services, private banking customers will be encouraged to use HSBC’s retail banking wealth management business.

Bernard Rennell, regional head of global private banking for Asia-Pacific, commented: “We have been serving the needs of wealthy families across the region for many generations, often advising the second, third or fourth generations of major business leaders and their families. 

“As Australia’s HNW population continues to rise, with forecasts to grow 17.8 per cent by 2020 [according to WealthInsight’s Australian Wealth Report 2016] we aim to appeal to an increasingly sophisticated investor base who want to diversify their portfolios, tap into international connectivity and access a broader range of products and services.”

The private banking business in Australia will be led by Hayden Matthews as head of private banking, HSBC Bank (Australia) Limited. 

Based in Sydney, Mr Matthews will be responsible for growing the private banking business from Australia, and will work closely with private banking teams in Hong Kong and Singapore. He brings more than 18 years of private banking experience to the role.

[Related: Bank confirms return to broker channel]

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Annie Kane

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