SFC CEO ASHLEY ALDER TO DEPART BEFORE TENURE ENDS
After 11 years of service as the chief executive officer of Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), Ashley Alder will leave before his tenure ends to take up a new role in the United Kingdom as chair of the Financial Conduct Authority in January 2023, the regulator announced on Friday (July 8).
Alder joined the SFC on October 1, 2011, and his current appointment ends on September 30, 2023. A recruitment exercise for Alder’s successor will soon commence, the regulator said.
As CEO, Alder's emphasis on strengthening Hong Kong’s role as a gateway for global firms and investors to the mainland has resulted in a collaborative relationship between the SFC and the China Securities Regulatory Commission as the cross-boundary mutual market access schemes continue to expand, the SFC said.
Under Alder’s leadership, the Stock Connect with the Chinese mainland was launched in November 2014, and the Bond Connect was launched in 2017. Most recently on Monday (July 4), financial regulators on both sides also jointly launched the Swap Connect, and included exchange-traded funds (ETF) in the Stock Connect trading, upon the 25th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to China.
During his term, Alder has also raised the status of Hong Kong as an international financial centre and its influence in setting global regulatory standards through his chairmanship of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) and participation in various international fora.
He has been a strong advocate of sustainable financial initiatives both locally and internationally as the effort to transition the financial system to address the threat of climate change gains urgency, SFC said.
FWD GROUP NAMES FREDERICK MA AS NEW CHAIR
FWD Group announced today that Frederick Ma has been appointed chair of its board of directors.
Ma succeeds Ronald Arculli who is retiring as chair. Arculli will remain a non-executive director until the end of the month in which FWD completes its planned initial public offering or December, 30 at the latest.
Ma joined the FWD board in 2013 and he brings to the role a wealth of public company board experience and a proven public sector track record.
He currently serves as an Independent non-executive director of HKEX-listed COSCO Shipping Holdings and Guangshen Railway Company and New York Stock Exchange-listed HH&L Acquisition.
CHUBB LIFE ANNOUNCES PRESIDENT FOR LINA KOREA
Chubb Life today announced that Jee Eun (Geannie) Cho has been appointed country president of the company's life insurance operations in Korea that were recently acquired from Cigna. The business will continue to operate as LINA Korea. Cho, who has led the Cigna business as chief executive officer since 2020, will continue to have executive operating responsibility for LINA Korea.
Cho will report to Bryce Johns, senior vice president, Chubb Group and president of Chubb Life. The appointment is effective immediately. Cho has more than 20 years of experience in the insurance industry. Prior to serving as CEO of CIGNA Korea, she was chief operating officer and vice president, operations. Earlier in her career, Cho was assistant vice president at Sun Life Financial and a manager at MetLife.
On July 1, Chubb, the world's largest publicly traded property and casualty insurer, completed its acquisition of the life and non-life insurance companies that house the personal accident, supplemental health and life insurance business of Cigna in six Asia-Pacific markets, including Korea.
TROY RIECK MADE CIO OF EMIRATES INVESTMENT AUTHORITY
The former chief investment officer of LGIASuper has been made the investment lead at the Emirates Investment Authority. The United Arab Emirates sovereign wealth fund could not be immediately contacted for comment and Troy Rieck declined to comment.
However, AsianInvestor understands that he has relocated to Abu Dhabi for the position, which was effective this month (July). The fund has an estimated $80 billion assets under management.
Rieck was the CIO of the super fund for two years but left in January 2022 after it merged with Energy Super. Before that, he had held executive positions at Equipsuper, Suncorp Group and the Queensland Investment Corporation.
Mark Rider was appointed as the CIO of the A$30 billion merged entity between LGIASuper and Energy Super in February this year. Rider was previously CIO at A$2 billion Christian Super and ANZ Wealth & Private Banking and Advice in Sydney.
UNISUPER REVAMPS INVESTMENT TEAM AS EQUITIES HEAD LEAVES
The A$105 billion UniSuper has overhauled its investment team with new heads of Australian equities, global strategies and quant methods, and private markets. At the same time, the head of equities Simon Hudson has resigned after 12 years with the firm.
Penny Heard has been made head of Australian equities from her previous role leading the global equities and quant methods team. She has been with the super fund for three years and was previously with JCP Investment Partners and Merrill Lynch.
Thomas Tam has been made her replacement as head of global equities and quant methods, leading the fund’s A$26 billion strategy. He has been with the fund for 17 years, and was with Mercer before that.
For the head of private markets role, UniSuper has appointed Sandra Lee, who has been with the fund 14 years and was most recently an investment manager for infrastructure at the fund. She was senior portfolio manager for infrastructure at Perpetual Limited before that. She also holds several non-executive director positions at firms such as Plenary Health and Sydney Airport.
All are internal hires and will report to chief investment officer John Pearce. All the appointments were made effective on July 1.
BNP PARIBAS AM APPOINTS SINGAPORE CEO
BNP Paribas Asset Management has appointed Angelia Chin-Sharpe as the firm’s Singapore chief executive officer (CEO), subject to regulatory approval. She takes the place of Christian Bucaro, who left the firm in May after 16 years.
Chin-Sharpe has been the head of BNP Paribas Asset Management Malaysia since she set it up in 2007. She moved to Singapore to lead the firm’s institutional sales from 2010 to 2012 before returning to Malaysia to take up the position of the firm’s country CEO.
She will relocate again to Singapore for her new position and continue to report to Steven Billiet, Asia Pacific CEO, head of global client group and member of the executive committee.
In her new role, she is responsible for accelerating and strengthening the firm’s Southeast Asia business interests, while driving BNP Paribas Asset Management’s sustainable solution offerings across the market’s client groups.
Chief operating officer Wei Chen Choo will be acting Malaysia CEO in the interim while the firm searches for Chin-Sharpe’s replacement.
BOCHK ASSET MANAGEMENT PROMOTES BEN YUEN TO CIO
BOCHK Asset Management’s chief investment officer for fixed income Ben Yuen has been promoted to CIO of the firm in July, according to his social media post.
Based in Hong Kong, Yuen joined BOCHK Asset Management in April 2014 as managing director and head of fixed income. He become CIO of fixed income in July 2016. He will still be head of the fixed income team, his profile wrote.
Yuen is a fixed income veteran with over 25 years of experience in the industry. Prior to BOCHK Asset Management, he held senior roles at UBS Global Asset Management, First State Investments, and HSBC Global Asset Management.
BOCHK Asset Management declined to comment.
VALUE PARTNERS MD JOINS ENDOWUS AS HONG KONG HEAD
Singapore-based digital wealth platform Endowus has appointed Steffanie Yuen as head of Hong Kong to prepare to launch wealth management and advisory services in the city by the fourth quarter of 2022.
Yuen joined Endowus end May 2022, a spokesperson told AsianInvestor. She will report to chief executive officer Gregory Van.
Up until Yuen's hire, Samuel Rhee, chair and chief investment officer, has been in charge of Hong Kong-related activities at Endowus. Rhee heads up the investment office and is also responsible for the company’s asset allocation and investment selection across all offerings, the spokesperson said.
Yuen was most recently managing director at Hong Kong-based asset manager Value Partners. Yuen’s last working day with Value Partners was in early May 2022, a spokesperson told AsianInvestor. She was based in Hong Kong and was responsible for leading the group’s marketing and communications, investor relations function, as well as other growth initiatives.
Ellen Tsang, who joined Value Partners in February 2022, is now managing director and head of marketing and communications. She is leading the overall marketing and communications functions and takes charge of the group’s branding, marketing, corporate communications and investor relations, the spokesperson said.
Yuen has previously also worked at Ant Group, Deutsche Bank and Barclays.
VONTOBEL APPOINTS NEW HEAD OF ASIA PACIFIC
Vontobel Asset Management has appointed Lee Wei Kai as head of Asia Pacific effective from July 1.
He takes over this position from Ulrich Behm, who will now lead Vontobel’s intermediary and partnerships channels in Switzerland.
Lee Wei Kai brings 18 years of industry experience and a long-standing track record in covering large asset owners and consultants across Asia Pacific. He will be based in Singapore in the new role,
Prior to joining Vontobel, Lee Wei Kai was a partner, head of Asia Pacific at Stone Harbor Investment Partners, in Asia. Before that, he worked for UBS Asset Management in Singapore.
Vontobel has been present in Asia Pacific since 2008, serving the region with teams in Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo and Sydney.
VALUE PARTNERS NAMES APAC HEAD OF INTERMEDIARIES
Value Partners has promoted Hong Kong retail distribution head Vincent Ching to head of intermediaries, Asia Pacific, effective July 1, the firm announced on Thursday (July 7).
Separately, Wallace Tsang, the group’s current regional head for intermediary business, Asia Pacific, has decided to step back from his current responsibilities due to family reasons. He will be departing at the end of July after 14 years at the group.
Ching and Tsang have worked closely over the years and will continue working together with the team in the next few weeks to ensure a seamless transition, the firm said.
In his new role, Ching will oversee the management and development of fund distribution management in the Asia Pacific region and Hong Kong. Based in Hong Kong, Ching reports to the group’s chief executive officer June Wong.
Ching has 18 years of experience in the fund management and financial services industry. Before his new role, he was the group’s head of Hong Kong for retail distribution, a position he has held since 2019. He first joined Value Partners in March 2015 as an associate director of intermediary business. Prior to joining Value Partners, he was vice president at BlackRock Asset Management North Asia.
The outgoing Tsang has over 20 years of experience across the asset management industry. He joined Value Partners in July 2008 as a senior sales manager and was appointed as managing director, intermediary business, in 2012. In December 2019, he was promoted to his last role as regional head for the intermediary business, Asia Pacific.
EASTSPRING HIRES ESG SPECIALIST FROM STANDARD CHARTERED
Eastspring Investments, the Asian asset management arm of Prudential, has appointed Joanne Khew as director, ESG specialist. The role was made effective in June and is a newly created role within the investment team.
She will continue to be based in Singapore and report to chief investment officer Bill Maldonado. She was most recently sustainable finance director at Standard Chartered in Singapore and was previously with companies such as the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and Singapore state investment firm Temasek.
STATE STREET GLOBAL ADVISORS APPOINTS MULTI ASSET TRADER
Hong Kong-based Anthony Mudukuti has joined State Street Global Advisors on July 4 as multi-asset trader, reporting to Graham Sorrell, head of Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and Asia Pacific equity and currency trading, the firm told AsianInvestor.
Mudukuti joined State Street Global Advisors from Bloomberg, where he worked for nearly eight years and held several roles on sell-side trading solutions across different asset classes. He was responsible for sell-side order management system and risk implementations before leaving in July.
MERCER EXPANDS ASIA WEALTH TEAM
Mercer announced three senior appointments to its Asia wealth team, with two recent joiners and one Mercer veteran bolstering the firm’s strong regional asset management and alternative investment rosters. Alvin Tay was appointed chief portfolio advisor in Asia and Anubhuti Gupta joined as principal, wealth, Singapore on 1 July 2022, while, separately, Henry Ching took on the role of head of private markets, Asia Pacific on 1 April 2022.
Tay and Gupta are based in Singapore while Ching is based in Hong Kong.
In his newly created role, Tay is responsible for advising Mercer’s Asia wealth business clients with a focus on those with significant allocations to alternatives. Tay reports to Janet Li, Wealth Business Leader, Asia, Mercer, a spokesperson told AsianInvestor.
He has 15 years of experience dealing with institutional investments and was most recently the head of investment risk at The Hong Kong Jockey Club. The Hong Kong Jockey Club did not respond AsianInvestor's inquiries about who has taken over Tay's role.
As a new headcount, Gupta will be leading and expanding key client relationships in Singapore as well as other Southeast Asia markets like Thailand and Malaysia. Gupta reports to Chong Chee Loong, wealth business leader, Singapore at Mercer, the Mercer spokesperson said.
Bringing with her some 17 years of asset management experience, Gupta was most recently the head of AXA Investment Managers (AXA IM) Singapore and head of Investment for APAC, Rosenberg Equities, AXA IM's equity quant business. She left the firm June 30 2022, a spokesperson told AsianInvestor.
Kevin Ong has been appointed as head of AXA IM Singapore. Having been with AXA IM since 2006, he is currently leading the investment data management team and is responsible for data engineering and model integrity, the spokesperson said.
Since January 1 2022, AXA IM has appointed Mark Hargraves, as global head of AXA IM Equity, a newly created platform that combines the firm’s fundamental (Framlington Equities) and quantitative (Rosenberg Equities) equity capabilities. His team will cover Gupta’s former remits in the meantime, the spokesperson said.
Ching, previously Mercer’s head of Asia real estate, has been appointed to an expanded role as head of private markets, Asia Pacific. Ching will oversee research in private markets investment strategies and assist clients with manager selection across private markets investments in the region. He has been with the firm for 11 years. Ching reports to Bradford Young, global co-CIO, private markets at Mercer, the spokesperson said.
CBRE APPOINTS HEAD OF DATA CENTRE SOLUTIONS
CBRE on Monday (July 4) appointed Dedi Iskandar as head of data centre solutions, advisory and transaction services, Asia Pacific. He started the new role on June 20.
Based in Singapore, Iskandar will oversee a team of data centre advisory and transactions professionals across the Asia Pacific region’s leading markets. He will be responsible for developing growth strategies for enterprise, operator, hyperscaler and service provider clients.
Iskandar will report to Luke Moffat, head of advisory & transaction services, Asia Pacific, and also has dotted reporting to Pat Lynch, global head of data centre solutions, the firm told AsianInvestor.
Iskandar has more than 18 years of experience in the telecommunications, and information and technology industry. He joins CBRE from Vantage Data Centers, where he served as head of sales, driving sales and business development for the company’s facilities in Asia Pacific. Prior to that, he led the sales and presales teams at PCCW, Telefonica and Tata Communications.