Another private bank has signalled its intention to ramp up in Asia, by starting to build a business-development team in Hong Kong. Vivienne Chhoeu, formerly Asia chief operating officer at Macquarie Private Wealth, has taken up the newly created business-development role.

Andrea Wong replaced her last month, having moved from DBS Private Bank in Singapore. She'd been at DBS for nine years, most recently as Singapore COO for Private Banking, where she managed a nine-strong team covering middle office, operational risk management and internal controls.

Wong has also worked as audit manager for Citibank in Hong Kong and Singapore and has extensive experience as a relationship manager.

Both Chhoeu and Wong report to Joseph Poon, head of Macquarie Private Wealth Asia.

As yet, the firm has set no hiring targets for its business-development team. It has a very specialised target audience and wants to assess the level of demand before settling on likely headcounts, says spokeswoman Irene O'Brien.

The target client base is ultra-high-net-worth individuals with $30m-plus in assets and at present is largely Asian (as opposed to expat Australian, for example).

Chhoeu will not be focussed on any specific asset class. The firm offers a "concierge service", says O'Brien, in that it looks at what each client needs and provides products and services as required.

In terms of research and product support, the firm has full access to the substantial resources of its parent bank, Macquarie, she adds.

Macquarie is not the only Australian bank to be expanding in the Asian private-wealth sector. ANZ Private Bank has been hiring aggressively in the region, while NAB is pursuing a deal to purchase asset manager Axa Asia-Pacific, which would boost the bank's offering in this area.