UBS Global Asset Management has appointed James Hong as chairman of its Greater China business, filling the vacancy from Fu Teh-hsiu's departure in November. Hong, like his predecessor, will report to Tokyo-based head of asset management for Asia Pacific Kai Sotorp.

Fu left to become managing director at new Sino-foreign asset management joint venture AIG Huatai Fund Management in Shanghai.

Hong previously ran the firm's alternative investment strategies group in Hong Kong, essentially a fund of hedge funds, and he will continue to run the Asian alternative and quantitative business, the focus of which is on hedge funds. A UBS spokesman says the expanded role is possible because the Asian alternative investment strategies group is being merged with the firm's Stamford, CT-based subsidiary, O'Connor, a multi-manager hedge fund strategy group.

The idea behind this arrangement is to deliver a more integrated business model to clients, says the spokesman. Hong was travelling and could not be contacted.

The new role entails directing strategy and development of the Greater China business and leveraging the firm's global asset management and investment banking capabilities. Sotorp sites Hong's access to the investment bank's fixed-income and equity sales teams as a way to drive business development: "Greater China represents the single largest investment market growth opportunity worldwide, and UBS Global Asset Management is determined to ensure that its range of global capabilities are available to these markets in the most efficient way."

Hong joined the firm in 1996 and has 18 years of experience in the investment management industry, with the last 10 focused on alternative strategies investment management.