Having built Standard Chartered's wealth-management arm into an operation with $40 billion in client assets in the short space of three years, Peter Flavel is on the move.

His new employer, JP Morgan, will be hoping he can preside over a similarly successful expansion of its own Asia-Pacific wealth-management business, amid increasingly fierce competition from both existing players and new entrants.

The US firm yesterday signalled plans to pursue a significant build-out of its high-net-worth business in the region, with expansion targets including Australia, China, India and Indonesia.

Flavel is on garden leave and will start in the newly created role of Asia chief executive of Private Wealth Management (PWM) sometime in the fourth quarter. He will report to Douglas Wurth, CEO of JP Morgan's International Private Bank, who relocated from New York late last year.

The PWM business in Asia will deliver advice and services of a level and quality similar to that of JP Morgan's Asia Private Bank -- headed by the newly appointed Andrew Cohen -- but with a focus on individuals and families with a net worth above $10 million.

The Asia Private Bank will service ultra-high-net-worth clients -- the firm's average UNHW client has $100 million in assets -- while JP Morgan decided it was time to set up a dedicated business for its less affluent, HNW clients, says a source familiar with the bank. This suggests the private bank -- which manages $650 billion in client assets globally -- is looking to grow its business in the fast-growing Asian HNW segment, of which Flavel has significant experience.

The bank declined to give further details of likely hires or planned headcount. However, Jamie Dimon, chairman and CEO of JP Morgan Chase, said in his annual letter to shareholders earlier this year that the firm intends to add more than 500 employees to its private-banking business in 2010.

Flavel had been due to move to Hong Kong from Singapore on July 1 to assume the role of global head of personal banking for Standard Chartered, but resigned on July 2. Shayne Nelson, previously regional CEO for the Middle East and North Africa, succeeded him at the private bank. Singapore-based chief marketing officer James Galloway has taken over as personal banking head in addition to his current duties

Flavel has left his former firm in good shape, having helped build it into a high-net-worth platform with more than 1,700 employees and locations in more than 30 markets including China, Hong Kong, India, Singapore and South Korea. The firm won AsianInvestor's inaugural award for private bank distributor this year, to boot.

Flavel was appointed global head of private banking at Standard Chartered in March 2006, charged with setting up the new business. He had joined the firm in February 2003 as global head of sales, marketing and distribution in Singapore, before becoming head of consumer banking for Singapore.

Before that, he spent seven years at National Australia Bank, his last post as general manager for personal financial services, Australia.