Dominic Wong has returned to Fidelity after a 15-month stint with BlackRock where he was head of retail sales in Hong Kong. At Fidelity, Wong has become head of the intermediary business; he started his new role on August 10.

Wong will oversee sales through all retail channels and will report to Kerry Ching, managing director for the Hong Kong business.

Before leaving for BlackRock, Wong worked at Fidelity between 2004 and 2008. His last job with the firm was as head of sales for bank channels. Altogether, Wong has 16 years of retail sales and marketing experience under his belt. Prior to Fidelity, he worked for New Alliance Asset Management (now known as AllianceBernstein), HSBC Asset Management and Citi.

Wong becomes the fourth person to assume the title of head of intermediary in just three years.

Eric Fu held the title up to 2007 when he was promoted to become a head of institutional business and then left shortly after to become a chief marketing officer at Shenzhen fund firm China Southern. The role then passed to David Mitchell, a former head of marketing from Fidelity's Korea office. Mitchell left Asia last year and the role was filled by Michael Fong in November 2008 as an interim measure.

With Wong's appointment, Fong will return to his official role as head of retail direct, focusing just on sales activities derived from Fidelity's direct sales channels.

Ching says Fidelity has seen a definite improvement in retail investor sentiment from the second quarter of this year compared to the second half of last year. With the chaos in the markets now over, the fund house felt a permanent hire for the role was needed and began searching for a suitable candidate in March this year.

While overall business intake is still weak compared to 2007 levels, Ching says the fund house is experiencing good inflows across a range of distribution channels from banks, insurance companies, and to a lesser extent, independent financial advisors.

As of the end of the first quarter, Fidelity International managed $141.8 billion in assets worldwide.

Back at BlackRock, the search for a replacement for Wong continues. BlackRock's Asia personnel are readying themselves for the integration with their newly acquired colleagues at Barclays Global Investors, which expanded with multiple sales hires in the region shortly before the sale to BlackRock.