Responding to strong client growth in the region, Deutsche Bank has made five senior appointments in Asia-Pacific emphasising its supply chain finance and domestic custody businesses.
Shivkumar Seerapu is assuming the new position of global head of financial supply chain and regional trade product for Asia; Eric Koo becomes head of global transaction banking for Hong Kong; and Mrugank Paranjape becomes head of domestic custody services in South and Southeast Asia. Ridzal Sheriff replaces Rojeanne Sen as head of global transaction banking for Malaysia, and Jacqueline William will take over Sheriff's former role as chief executive of Deutsche Trustee Malaysia. All appointments are internal promotions.
"We are convinced Asia will represent a disproportionate amount of growth in trade finance, cash management and custody in the coming years," says Thomas DuCharme, Deutsche's regional head of global transaction banking for Asia ex-Japan.
Singapore-based Seerapu retains his old duties as Asia-Pacific regional head for trade finance despite the promotion. Commenting on his new position, Seerapu said he will meet a need within the bank to look at supply chain finance on a more "global basis". He has been with the bank since 2006.
"The most important priority for me is to establish within the organisation a uniform credit policy for supply chain," says Seerapu. "Everybody from the credit team to the sales team and the relationship team [needs to] understand and talk the same language when it comes to the approval process for these kinds of deals."
Responding to whether Deutsche's global transaction banking platform was not previously global, he says the "platform" was always global but the "programmes", such as supplier and receivables finance, were typically regionally run.
"We will establish more consistency with the programmes based solutions we offer our clients," says DuCharme.
On the new product front, Seerapu wants to build on the bank's non-financial services offerings to supply chain customers globally. He cited the example of an operational supply chain solution for a German retailer to increase the efficiency of payables between the company and their Asian suppliers.
"Financial supply chain is one of the key strategic initiatives in the medium-term," says Seerapu. "It is important for the bank to look at supply chain as a global business. The development of our supply chain solutions will henceforth be country and region neutral."
In Hong Kong, Koo will maintain his duties as head of trade finance and cash management for corporates in addition to his new role. Previously successful at capturing trade flows and growing Deutsche's client portfolio in Hong Kong, he is charged with driving the bank's transaction strategies and aligning its business plan in the city with the region's priorities. Koo has been with the bank since 2006.
The appointment of Paranjape as head of domestic custody services for South and Southeast Asia is in direct response to the bank's growing client base. Effective immediately, he takes over duties for India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam from Thibaud de Maintenant, Asia-Pacific head of domestic custody services product and client management. Paranjape will report to De Maintenant who will now focus more on North Asia but will continue to oversee the bank's Asia-Pacific domestic custody business.
"Paranjape has been the rockstar within Deutsche's domestic custody franchise," says DuCharme. "We felt it was natural to give him a broader scope in looking at more countries to really copy best practices from India to those countries."
Since Paranjape took over as India head of Deutsche's domestic custody business in 2005, the business's revenue has grown by an average of 65% per year in the country.
In Malaysia, Sheriff will take over as the country's head of global transaction banking and domestic custody services from Sen when he retires in November. At that time, William will replace him as chief executive of Deutsche Trust Malaysia. As country head, Sheriff will focus on expanding the bank's transaction franchise in Malaysia through client acquisition and targeted market expansion. Sheriff has been with the bank since 2007.
William was previously head of client services for Deutsche's domestic custody services in the country. Kamala Devi, Deutsche's current Malaysia head of trust and securities operations, will succeed her.
The five appointments are part of the bank's ongoing emphasis to promote internal talent. In March, Deutsche promoted three transaction banking employees in Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan to leadership roles.
Global transaction banking net revenue at the bank was down less than 1% year-on-year to €1.32 billion ($1.86 billion) in the first half. Deutsche attributed the decline to lower interest rates, declining asset values and low market activity. Trade finance grew during the period.