UBS has set up a fund services office in Hong Kong with three new hires in tow in a bid to compete with a growing number of global players targeting Asia-Pacific clients.

The new office will provide business development and client relationship management services to fund administration clients across the Asia-Pacific. A range of fund administration services û from assistance with fund set-up, distribution support, NAV calculation and reporting û will be offered, with an initial focus on services for hedge fund managers, fund promoters and family offices, the global bank says.

Michelle Chua joins as the bankÆs head of business development for funds services Asia-Pacific. Prior to this, she worked at Fidelity Investments as head of its clients servicing team for institutional services, based in Hong Kong. She previously worked as head of sales and client relationships at HSBC Fund Services.

Chua will initially be supported by a team of two business developers who have joined from competitor banks in Hong Kong.

ôGlobal fund administrators are increasingly seeing opportunities in Asia-Pacific, due to the growth of the Asian hedge fund market, which over the past five years has grown by 30% each year,ö says Chua.

ôHong Kong is strategically important as we can service clients across the region, including Korea, Japan, Singapore and Australia. Many of our clients are global managers who are also well-established in Hong Kong. It makes perfect sense for us to be close to our clients, and offer a single point of contact in their time zone,ö she adds.

The bank also plans to set up shop in Singapore for similar fund administration services, but has declined to provide a specific timeline.

The UBS fund services division forms part of its global asset management business group; administering around $600 billion worth of assets globally.