Deutsche appoints China chairman

Lee Zhang promoted to top China job as Deutsche gears for expansion.

Deutsche Bank is expanding its China operations in anticipation of a surge in business. Lee Zhang, former chief country officer for China, will step up to the newly created role of chairman to help the bank exploit opportunities created by China's WTO accession.

In August Deutsche became one of the first overseas banks to win a licence to operate as a qualified foreign institutional investor, allowing it to take part in China's $500 billion local currency share market. The bank has also recently been awarded an internet banking licence and already has a renminbi licence in Shanghai. The bank has also expressed interest in setting up a domestic equity underwriting joint venture with a local bank.

Following Lee's promotion to chairman the role of chief country officer will now be filled by Chun Chun Li, a director of UBS's Beijing office. "China is an important component of our global growth strategy," says Ken Borda, Deutsche's Asia-Pacific CEO. "These senior appointments reflect the successful development of our business in China under the leadership of Lee Zhang. Chun Chun Li brings a wealth of investment banking and management experience to our business and will work together with Lee Zhang, and regional management, in the continued strategic development of our franchise in China."

Lee, who joined Deutsche from Goldman Sachs in March 2001, was previously responsible for corporate finance but in his new position will assume a broader focus to grow the bank's onshore business across the board. The bank is currently working on three key mandates on the mainland: China Life Insurance's IPO, which is expected to raise as much as $3 billion, and two $1 billion share sales for China Minsheng Banking Corp and Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp.