Neuberger Berman names Reits portfolio manager
Fund house Neuberger Berman has appointed Anton Kwang to the newly created Hong Kong-based role of senior portfolio manager for Asia Pacific in its global real estate securities group, effective July 7.

The group invests mainly in real estate investment trusts (Reits), manages $2 billion in property securities globally and is headed by Steve Shigekawa in New York.

Kwang was previously lead Asia-Pacific portfolio manager for Standard Life Investments’ global real estate funds and left the firm on April 16.

Asked whether a replacement had been found, Asia head David Peng said: “We have strengthened our real estate capability with Toshio Tangiku’s appointment [last month] and will continue to grow the Hong Kong team as part of SLI’s broader plans to meet growing demand in Asia.”

Natixis creates regional insurance sector sales role
French bank Natixis has appointed Eddie Leung to the newly created role of Asia-Pacific head of insurance coverage, reporting to Daniel Yap, Asia-Pacific head of financial institutions and public sector coverage.

Leung was previously a director in the asset-and-liability management (ALM) solutions team at HSBC Global Banking and Markets from 2011-2014. Frederic Marquer is understood to have transferred to Hong Kong from the UK bank’s fixed income and derivatives sales team in London to replace him.

Fund managers have noted growing demand from insurance companies in Asia for ALM expertise. Firms such as BNP Paribas Investment Partners, BNY Mellon Asset Management and PineBridge Investments and have increased their focus on the insurance sector in Asia in the past year, including establishing new posts for that purpose.

Moreover, insurers are also looking to build up their in-house ALM capabilities in the region with one recent example being Allianz.

Before joining HSBC, Leung worked in Credit Suisse’s fixed income ALM structuring team and ABN Amro’s global markets financial institutions solutions team. He has also worked for a number of insurers, including Pacific Century, Zurich and Swiss Re.

Principal fills new Korea sales role
US-based Principal Global Investors has named Brian Shin Hee-Jai as head of institutional sales for Korea based in Hong Kong.

In the newly created role, Shin, who took up the post in April, reports to Andrea Muller, PGI’s Asia chief executive, and Kirk West, executive director for international investments.

The role was carved out from Helen Chang’s position as head of institutional sales for North Asia because the firm is focusing on growing its client base in Korea.

Shin is tasked with fostering relationships with sovereign wealth funds, government pension funds, central banks, insurance companies and endowments.

He was most recently director of sales for Korea at fixed income specialist Bluebay Asset Management in Hong Kong, which he left in December, according to his LinkedIn profile. BlueBay could not be reached by press time for comment on whether Shin had been replaced.

Towers Watson promotes Tang to Hong Kong MD  
Investment consultancy Towers Watson has appointed Jeffrey Tang as managing director of its Hong Kong office, effective July 1.

Tang has overall responsibility for the firm’s business in Hong Kong and reports to Bob Charles, the company’s Hong Kong-based managing director for Asia Pacific.

Tang was most recently head of Towers Watson’s talent and rewards practice in Hong Kong. His clients include sovereign wealth funds, government-linked companies, family-owned conglomerates and multinationals.

He replaces Mark Saunders, who moved to Hong Kong-based insurer AIA in March as head of strategy and corporate development.

Barclays fills new FX, rates options positions
Barclays has appointed Chris Colman as global head of FX options trading and Wu Xiao as global head of rates options trading. The move is part of Barclays' drive to reposition its foreign exchange, rates and selected commodities business under one structure.

Both positions were newly created and based in Singapore.

Colman’s new position expands on his role as head of FX trading for Asia Pacific and Wu’s on his role as global head of structured rates. They will report to Conor Brown, Asia-Pacific head of markets, and Adrian McGowan, global head of FX trading.

Having these global roles in Asia demonstrates the importance Barclays places on investment banking in the region, said Brown.

The bank did not previously have global heads for options trading, as these responsibilities were shared across other positions.

Barclays said the appointments are part of a wider repositioning of its markets business within the investment bank that it announced in May, and are partly being driven by client demand.

Credit Suisse names SE Asia head of financial institutions
Credit Suisse has brought on board Sharhan Muhseen to head coverage of financial institutions across Southeast Asia.

Muhseen was previously head of financial institutions for Southeast Asia and Sri Lanka at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. He remains in Singapore and now reports to Michael Tan, head of financial institutions for Asia Pacific.

The move reunites Muhseen with Tan, who moved across from BoA-Merrill last year, where he was also head of financial institutions for Asia Pacific.

Muhseen's move comes as financial institutions grow as a source of revenue for regional bankers with local banks paying for advice on mergers and acquisitions as they look to expand beyond their home market or seeking help to raise capital that is compliant with new global regulations.

Before joining BoA-Merrill in 2007, Muhseen was an associate director in the regional corporate finance team at Deloitte & Touche.

Other people news reported on AsianInvestor this week:

Simon Flood to replace Leoni as Axa IM’s Asia head

HK SFC bans former BOCI Securities exec

HK SFC bans one exec, suspends another

Kingsmead readies Vietnam small-/mid-cap fund