DIMENSIONAL APPOINTS NEW ASIA CHIEF

Dimensional Fund Advisors has promoted Joel Kim, international head of fixed income, to Asia ex-Japan chief executive, effective next month. He will relocate from London to Singapore for the post at the $514 billion systematic factor-focused asset manager, and will also retain his former role.

Kim succeeds Peng Chen, who left in November 2019 after seven years with the Texas-based firm. In the interim Steve Clark, head of Dimensional's international (ex-US) business, had been overseeing Asia ex-Japan.

Kim had joined Dimensional in 2016 in Singapore as a senior portfolio manager from BlackRock, where he was head of Asia Pacific fixed income. Before that Kim spent 14 years with ING Investment Management in various fixed income portfolio management positions.

HSBC MAKES SENIOR CHINA INVESTMENT HIRES

HSBC Jintrust Fund Management has hired Huang Lihua as head of active equity from Chinese group Citic to lead its Shanghai-based equity investment team. 

Huang Lihua

With 13 years of experience in managing Chinese equities, Huang was previously an executive director in the private equity funds investment team at Citic. Based in Shanghai, he reports to Michael Zheng, head of investment at HSBC Jintrust. 

Dolon Qiu was the previous head of active equity at HSBC Jintrust, a joint venture between HSBC Global Asset Management and Shanxi Trust Company, in 2018. 

HSBC Global AM has also confirmed that Caroline Maurer will join in September as head of Chinese and Hong Kong equities, as previously reported by AsianInvestor.

Hong Kong-based Maurer will succeed Mandy Chan, who left in December, and will manage around $7 billion of Chinese equities. Maurer was previously head of Greater China equities at BNP Paribas Asset Management.

Maurer will report to Bill Maldonado, Asia Pacific chief investment officer at HSBC Global AM.

SIMCORP HIRES APAC DATA MANAGEMENT SALES HEAD

Investment management system provider SimCorp has hired Guillaume Rondy in the newly created role of Asia Pacific head of SimCorp Gain and data management sales. SimCorp Gain is an enterprise data management application.

Guillaume Rondy

The post was established to drive the firm’s ‘data as a service’ offering, said a SimCorp spokeswoman. “This is a fairly recent offering and we are ramping up our resources globally around the service.”

Rondy was most recently at rival tech vendor IHS Markit, where he headed sales for their enterprise data management solution for nine years – six of which were spent in Asia Pacific. He has also held roles at Moody’s Analytics and several French fintech companies.

Institutional investors have sharply ramped up their focus on data management in recent years. SimCorp acquired Gain last year with this in mind.

The tech vendor now has 84 staff in Asia Pacific, having added “quite a few people during the lockdown”, the spokeswoman said, without providing a number. Software services, especially cloud-based ones, have seen increased demand from investors.

ALVAREZ & MARSAL APPOINTS RESTRUCTURING MD 

Restructuring and turnaround firm Alvarez & Marsal has named Edward Middleton as a Hong Kong-based managing director in the firm's restructuring practice, effective early July. 

A spokesman for the firm said it had created the role as it was expanding in Asia because businesses were increasingly in need of restructuring advice amid rising market volatility and financial pressure.

Middleton reports to Ron Thompson, Asia head of the restructuring practice, and Tiffany Wong, restructuring managing director.

Middleton joined from Houlihan Lokey, where he was co-head of its Asian financial restructuring group. The investment bank declined to comment on his departure. 

CREDIT SUISSE NAMES THAILAND WEALTH HEAD

Credit Suisse has appointed Edwin Tan as head of wealth management for Thailand, effective immediately. 

He is replacing Natt Thanomsat, who had joined the bank in March 2019, according to his LinkedIn profile. Credit Suisse declined to comment on when Natt left.

Based in Bangkok, Tan reports functionally to Marcus Slöör, Singapore-based market group head for Thailand and Vietnam, and locally to Chris Prasertsintanah, Thailand country manager. Tan has a dotted reporting line to Claude Harbonn, head of investment consulting for Singapore.

The appointment was made in addition to his current role as head of advisory and sales for Thailand. He will be responsible for expanding the firm’s presence in the country, where it had set up the wealth desk in 2016.

Tan rejoined Credit Suisse in February this year from Bangkok-based SCB Julius Baer, where he was head of investment advisory and solutions. 

CLIFFORD CHANCE APPOINTS NEW APAC HEAD

Connie Heng

UK-headquartered law firm Clifford Chance has appointed Connie Heng to lead its Asia Pacific operations from November 1, to replace Geraint Hughes.

Based in Hong Kong, Heng has been head of the Asia Pacific capital markets practice since 2015.  

A spokeswoman confirmed Hughes would remain a partner in Asia Pacific. According to a press release, the two will work together to ensure a transition over the coming four months. In her new role, Heng reports to Matthew Layton, managing partner for Clifford Chance.

Heng has worked at Clifford Chance since 2000, was made a partner in 2005 and became a member of Clifford Chance’s Global Wider Leadership Group in 2018. In her role as head of the capital markets practice, she has been in charge of over 100 regional specialists covering global capital raising activities.

Clifford Chance said it would announce a replacement for Heng later this year. In the meantime, she will continue to advise clients on capital markets transactions.

Other people news reported by AsianInvestor in the past week:

Franklin Templeton picks Asia chief for merged group

CPPIB plans buildout of Asia capital markets team

Value Partners' former chief departs