David Edwards has joined Citi's securities and fund services' (SFS) Sydney office as director and head of investor sales for Australia and New Zealand.

Edwards will start in August after a three-year stint at JP Morgan worldwide securities services, where he was Sydney-based head of sales for Australia and New Zealand. Before that, he worked at State Street. He will report to Martin Carpenter, head of SFS for Australia and New Zealand at Citi.

His newly created role is part of an overall strategy to boost Citi's sales staff in this area, following the recent high-profile hires of Chris Ryan, ex-managing director of Fidelity Asia, and Philippe Dirckx, former head of Euroclear Asia-Pacific. 

The bank also recently launched full fund-administration services for the Australian market - a move reflective of its belief that Australia's superannuation industry is growing.

Carpenter says the Australian pension market is growing and seeing consolidation among large providers (in terms of the size, number and scope of pension providers). Some fund managers have grown steadily over recent decades, and they are now expanding into Asia. Citi helps them do that by offering what is effectively a consultancy service, says Carpenter. "That has been a strong card for us," he says.

There has also been a debate going on in Australia over middle-office structures and outsourcing. Companies have been looking at what is core and non-core, Carpenter says. But recently there has been far more outsourcing as fund managers seek to cut costs, particularly in light of new regulations, which have reduced some fees.

Carpenter also expects growth in New Zealand, which put in place its own KiwiSaver retirement scheme in 2007.

Citi Australia has more than $120 billion in assets under custody. Citi reports it has several large investor clients -- it is well known, for example, that the bank's client base includes Colonial First State.

Citi has been on a general push to increase its regional staff numbers in SFS, particularly in front-office roles, says Carpenter, and Edwards' appointment is in line with that.