J.P. Morgan has appointed David Hansson as head of its equity-linked structured products business in Asia (including Australia but excluding Japan) as part of a strategy to build its equity derivatives franchise in the region.

Hansson, who will transfer from London to Hong Kong to take up his new position, will get the tongue-rolling title of head of structured investments distributor marketing (SIDM) for Asia ex-Japan and Australia. In plain English it means that he will be responsible for developing the bankÆs platform for equity-linked structured products and for the distribution of these products.

He will work closely with Charles Wong, who is head of fixed-income products for SIDM in Asia ex-Japan, to drive the bankÆs overall offering of structured products across asset classes.

Hansson, a Swedish national, comes to Asia after 10 years in London. This is Hansson's second inning with J.P. Morgan. He joined the US bank in 1998 then left after two years and rejoined in 2005. Since then Hansson has led the expansion of the Nordic SIDM team in London in terms of broadening the asset classes on offer. He has also helped to build what J.P. Morgan describes as ôa leading structured products deskö in the Nordic region, which should make him well suited for building the platform in Asia.

However, in light of the current financial crisis, the appetite for structured products is likely to have shifted away from a chase for high yield towards products that are focused more on risk management and capital preservation, making his new job perhaps a bit different to what he has been doing over the past three years.

Prior to his most recent role, Hansson was responsible for the marketing of equity and fund-linked derivatives to financial institutions in the Nordic region.

Hansson reports to Patrick Moisy, J.P. MorganÆs head of equity derivatives in Asia, and to Beat von Gunten, who is the bank's London-based global head of SIDM. He replaces John Robson who left in May 2007. Moisy was heading the SIDM team in the interim since Robson's departure.

In a written comment, Moisy says the bank remains ôoptimistic and excitedö about the long-term prospects for structured products in Asia. ôI am confident that DavidÆs experience in managing investor marketing and in expanding the SIDM in the Scandinavian region will bring great value to Asia,ö he says.

J.P. Morgan says it has seen strong client flow in SIDM despite challenging trading conditions. At a time when a number of its competitors are cutting back in this area, it is adding capabilities in structured products to enable it to build SIDM in Asia and globally.