Brisbane-based institutional investment manager QIC has signed up former CIC managing director James Ieong as a senior adviser on China.

Ieong actually started with QIC this August, according to his LinkedIn profile. It comes after Australia’s former ambassador to China, Geoff Raby, began working with QIC as a Beijing-based consultant in September last year, as reported.

Both men appear to have been hired to conduct relationship-building activities from Beijing, an indication of QIC’s more direct approach to China.

Government-owned QIC has yet to announce Ieong’s appointment and the firm declined to comment when approached by AsianInvestor.

David Addis, QIC’s managing director of corporate strategy based in Brisbane, previously told AsianInvestor that Raby would give it easier access to potential investors and a base from which to serve investors out of China.

He added QIC would build capabilities in that market incrementally, and that it would at some point seek to apply for a qualified foreign institutional investor (QFII) licence.

Previously Ieong spent four years working for $410 billion sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corporation (CIC). There he was tasked with building its private equity programme.

Interestingly, this July QIC appointed Damien Frawley from BlackRock Australia as its new CEO, succeeding Doug McTaggart who announced his intention to retire in mid-2012. BlackRock and CIC recently teamed up to co-invest in PE opportunities around the globe.

Separately, this August Brian Delaney quit AMP Capital to join QIC as its chief of global clients, products and marketing.

QIC operates as a house of specialised investment boutiques and manages about $68 billion in funds under management for superannuation funds and other institutional investors.

Its expertise centres around sovereign wealth and multi-asset capabilities, fixed income (global), real estate, infrastructure (global) and private equity (global). It also has a small domestic equities boutique. It is estimated it manages A$500 million in listed and unlisted asset classes for Asian clients.