BNY Mellon Asset Management's transition management unit has appointed Keith Griffiths as its new director for Australia as it continues to grow its transitions business in the region.

Based in Sydney, Griffiths will focus on the development and growth of Mellon Transition Management's (MTM) business in Australia and New Zealand. He reports to Jamie Cashman, New Jersey-based global head of sales for MTM.

"Keith's appointment reflects institutional investors' increased demands for greater transparency and fiduciary care during transitions in the region," says Mark Keleher, chief executive of MTM.

The addition of the director for Australia position comes one month after BNY Mellon received a banking license from the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority to set-up offices in Melbourne and Sydney. The bank plans to add banking services for institutional clients and broaden its range of local and global capabilities in the country.

Griffiths was previously director of institutional business development at BNY Mellon Asset Management Australia. The bank has not named a replacement.

Earlier this year, Keleher noted MTM was experiencing strong growth.

"Our growth accelerated as a result of the high volatility in the financial markets between late 2007 and early 2009," he says. "Market turbulence accelerated the rising dominance of transition managers such as MTM that follow the fiduciary model."  

In June, MTM predicted a "record" number of institutional transitions would occur in the third and fourth quarters. The prediction was based on a 40% rise in pre-trade inquiries during the first five months of the year and a "substantial" jump in executed transitions.

"Pre-trade inquiries have proven to be a good predictor of transition activity," said Keleher. "Often leading actual transition activity by several months."

In the second half, BNY Mellon Asset Management posted revenue of $981 million, down 28% year-on-year. The bank does not break out MTM revenues.