Weekly roundup of job-hoppers, June 14

Lyxor names former Fortune director to head Asia; Axa IM Middle East sales head exits; Barings hires two EM execs; London tax specialist unveils HK office.
Weekly roundup of job-hoppers, June 14

Lyxor taps Tse to head Asia business
French firm Lyxor Asset Management named Gilbert Tse as head of its Asia division.

In what it says is a newly created role, Tse will oversee Lyxor’s Asian business from the firm’s Hong Kong office, driving its growth in the region.

In addition to coordinating Lyxor’s businesses across the region, notably in Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan and Korea, Tse will focus on Shanghai-based Fortune SG Fund Management Co, a joint venture between Lyxor and Baosteel Group.

Tse was previously executive vice-general manager at Fortune. A replacement will be announced shortly, Lyxor says.

Last April, Tse told AsianInvestor how Fortune was aiming to launch more hedge fund-like products, including long/short strategies invested in individual stocks in China, to meet mainland investors’ demands for higher returns.

It has not been plain-sailing for Lyxor in Asia, however – the firm suffered a hiccup in the region when it delisted its whole 12-strong range of Hong Kong-listed exchange-traded funds early last year. Lyxor still has ETFs listed in Singapore.

Its two ETF sales staff, regional ETF head Herman Chen and deputy Christine Huang, have since left the firm – Chen to Fidelity and Huang to Invesco.

The manager is also known for alternative investments, such as the quantitative strategies it offers, and a spokeswoman told AsianInvestor that Lyxor’s “ambitions in Asia are strong”, hence the decision to create this role for Tse.

Previously Pierre Gil was head of international development in Paris before moving to London in January 2013 to take up the role CEO of Lyxor UK. The spokeswoman declined to comment further.

Lyxor is part of Société Générale, which as of April 30 managed $97.8 billion in total assets.

Axa IM sales head departs to search firm
After three years as Middle East director of institutions at Axa Investment Managers in Qatar, Stephane Battistella joined Dubai-based recruitment firm Metin Mitchell & Company this month.

He is senior client partner at the firm, which provides board level and C-suite executive search, management consultancy and corporate governance advisory across the Middle East.

Metin Mitchell’s chairman is Youssef Nasr, previously chairman and chief executive of HSBC for the Middle East and North Africa.

Before joining Axa IM in March 2010, Battistella spent nine years at Schroder Investment Management, first in Paris, then Dubai, most recently as head of Middle East business development. He also worked at Baring Asset Management for five years, most recently as head of French institutional business development.

Axa IM could not confirm whether Battistella had been or would be replaced by press time.

Barings appoints members to EM teams
London investment firm Baring Asset Management made two appointments on its emerging markets equities team.

Staffan Lindfeldt joined as head of global emerging market equities on June 10. He reports to Tim Scholefield, head of equities. Lindfeldt previously spent nearly seven years as chief portfolio manager of global emerging markets at Stockholm-based investment manager Handelsbanken Asset Management.

Lindfeldt replaces Roberto Lampl. A spokesman declined to comment on Lampl’s whereabouts.

In addition, Isabelle Alexander joins Barings as an investment manager on the global emerging market equities team, a newly-created position. She works with William Palmer, assisting with managing the EM portfolios.

Alexander previously spent seven years at Swiss firm Pictet Asset Management as a portfolio manager on its global EM team.

Both are based in London.

UK tax specialist opens HK office
London tax and claims specialist Goal Group opened a new office in Hong Kong and plans to significantly expand in the region by 2020.

The group – which provides class-action services to corporate pensions, custodians, banks, local government authorities, brokerages and hedge funds – has been expanding its global presence for a number of months, after opening an office in Philadelphia last October and in Melbourne at the beginning of the year.

The company has appointed Jonathan Hu to head up the Hong Kong office. Hu joins from rating agency Fitch Solutions, where he was a director and head of greater China sales. Previously he worked at Bloomberg as an enterprise solutions and bond pricing sales manager for Greater China, and before that at the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.

Goal Group plans to bulk out its Hong Kong office, located in Cheung Kong Centre, although a spokeswoman declined to offer specific numbers.

“It will depend on the market as to how and when the office expands, but we expect the Asia-Pacific market [will] grow significantly by 2020,” the spokeswoman said.

As the securities class-action scene continues to develop outside of the US, having an international presence is becoming more important, notes Stephen Everard, chief executive officer of Goal Group.

“The Hong Kong securities regulator proposed in May 2012 the introduction of legislation to allow class-action lawsuits to help investors seek damages,” Hu said in a statement, adding that the international expansion of the securities class actions will lead to an uptick in “non-US jurisdictions that mirror the US”.

Other people moves reported by AsianInvestor in the past week:

TCW boosts Asia headcount, set to add more

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