Khazanah poaches CIMB’s head of investment banking
Malaysian sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional has named former CIMB group deputy CEO Charon Wardini Mokhzani as executive director in its managing director’s office, effective from November 6.

Charon is currently responsible for the day-to-day running of CIMB’s investment banking business – a job he has had since he joined the bank in August 2004.

CIMB group CEO Nazir Razak will take over as head of investment banking on a temporary basis while the bank seeks a permanent replacement. A CIMB spokesman tells AsianInvestor sister publication FinanceAsia that there are enough heads and co-heads of the different businesses within the investment bank to nullify the short-term impact of Mokhzani’s departure on daily operations.

Separately, Nungsari Ahmad Radhi, head of research and investment strategy at Khazanah, left the sovereign wealth fund on September 1 to join Prokhas, a wholly owned company of the Minister of Finance. Nungsari was with the sovereign wealth fund since February 2007.

Khazanah is the largest shareholder in CIMB with a 30% stake. As of the end of March, it had $40.6 billion in assets under management.

The state fund did not respond to queries about what Mokhzani’s new role would entail or whom he would replace.

Axa IM plans Asia expansion
Axa Investment Managers will relocate Mark Tinker from London to Hong Kong as Asia head of Axa Framlington, the French firm’s fundamental equity arm.

He joined in November 2006 and managed its Global Opportunities fund from September 2007 through August 2013. His position is new. Jean-Pierre Leoni is Asia-Pacific head of Axa IM.

Tinker will report to Axa Framlington global CEO Mark Beveridge, who is based in London.

Mark Hargraves, who previously ran the Global Opportunities fund alongside Tinker in London, is now solely responsible for managing the portfolio.

Axa IM, a multi-asset manager under insurance group Axa, managed $736 billion as of June 30. It has regional offices in Beijing, Hong Kong, Singapore, Sydney and Tokyo, and joint-ventures in Mumbai, Seoul and Shanghai.

The 40-strong Hong Kong office is chiefly focused on business development, although the firm does have investment professionals there. In addition to equities, they manage fixed income and multi-asset solutions via mutual funds and separately managed accounts.

Fidelity hires ex-BlackRock fund manager
Fidelity Worldwide Investment has hired BlackRock’s former lead China fund manager, Jing Ning, as manager of one of its China strategies.

Based in Hong Kong, Ning replaces Martha Wang, who will leave on October 31 to take a career break, says a Fidelity spokeswoman. Wang has overseen the China Focus Fund since May 2006. Its AUM totalled $3.4 billion as of August 31.

Ning will report to John Ford, Fidelity’s chief investment officer for Asia Pacific. She will have a 13-strong analyst team supporting her, all focused on Chinese equities.

Ning had joined BlackRock in 2008 to launch a new dedicated China equity fund, and has managed it for five years.

Andrew Swan and Emily Dong have taken over Ning’s responsibilities at BlackRock, a spokesman says, adding that there are four investment professionals in total working on the fund.

Ning previously worked at AIG Investments from 1999 through 2007 as head of Chinese equities based in Shanghai, and was responsible for two China A-share funds.

Nikko AM makes senior hires
Japan’s Nikko Asset Management has made a number of appointments in Tokyo.

It hired Hideo Abe as executive vice chairman, in what the company says is a newly created position. He will focus on the company’s marketing initiatives to sell its product line to both Japanese and offshore institutional and retail investors.

Abe was previously at Mizuho Securities, where he was deputy president from 2008 through 2013. Mizuho did not respond by press time as to whether he had been replaced. Before Mizuho, Abe was CEO at Nikko Citigroup from 2004 through 2008.

In addition, Nikko AM named Mitsuaki Hasegawa as chief compliance officer (CCO). Ross Long previously held this title, along with chief legal officer, but will now solely be chief legal officer.

Long has overseen the firm’s compliance duties since joining a year ago. A spokeswoman says it was always Nikko AM’s intention to appoint a permanent CCO.

Hasegawa joins from Mitsubishi Corp-UBS Realty, where he worked as an external auditor. He has also held roles at Sanwa Bank, Merrill Lynch, Fidelity Investments, Deutsche Securities, Goldman Sachs Asset Management and UBS Global Asset Management.

Long will continue to report to Charles Beazley, Nikko AM’s president and CEO, while Hasegawa will report to executive vice president Masahiko Murakami.

A spokeswoman did not respond by press time to a query about whom Abe reports to.

These moves come after it emerged that Nikko AM is acquiring an as-yet-unidentified Singapore-based boutique fund firm and separately lost a equities team to Threadneedle Investments, in news broken by AsianInvestor.

Old Mutual pushes Asia growth with hires
Old Mutual Wealth, which falls under the UK’s Old Mutual Group, is expanding its Asian operations with a number of senior hires. This includes additions to its offshore businesses, Skandia International, and its asset management business, Old Mutual Global Investors.

Carol Wong will join Old Mutual Global Investors in November as Asia head of distribution, replacing Jane Fung, who left OMGI earlier in September to join Principal Global Investors in Hong Kong.

Wong stems from BNP Paribas Investment Partners in Hong Kong, where she was head of distribution for China, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia. She spent 15 years at BNPP IP and previously worked at Jardine Fleming Unit Trusts and HSBC. Both positions were in Hong Kong.

Kylie Chan replaces Wong at BNPP IP as head of distribution for Hong Kong and China. Chan has been with the firm since 2007 as vice president of distribution for Hong Kong. Before, she was an investment consultant at Citibank. BNPP IP is the asset management arm of French bank BNP Paribas, and managed €478 billion ($644.4 billion) as of June 30.

In addition, Steve Hickman and Xerxes Wong have joined Old Mutual’s offshore business, Skandia International. Hickman is global head of high net worth and Wong moves to the commercial product team for Asian high net worth, both newly created roles in Hong Kong.

Hickman joins from HSBC, where he was head of distribution for its high-net-worth business. Before HSBC, he worked at American International Assurance (AIA) in Hong Kong in its HNW brokerage division.

Wong was previously at AIA in Hong Kong and before that in AIA’s India office.

HSBC did not respond to requests for comment by press time. An AIA spokeswoman declined to comment on whether Wong has been replaced.

Matthews Asia grows HK headcount
Tina Tong has joined Matthews Asia as vice president of Asia business development in Hong Kong and will focus on selling the firm’s fund range to private banks, insurers and financial advisers across the region. She reports to James Campion, head of Asia business development also in Hong Kong.

She previously held a similar role at boutique fund manager Peak Capital in the same city. Peak did not respond to a request seeking comment.

Tong’s appointment brings Matthews Asia’s business development headcount in Hong Kong to three, and the firm-wide headcount to five. (The firm also has a marketer and a compliance executive in Hong Kong).

The San Francisco-based firm is mulling rolling out its first Asia-focused funds out of Hong Kong, which would be the first it will have managed outside the US. A spokesman declined to comment on whether there has been any progress on this front.

Matthews Asia oversaw $23.8 billion in AUM as of August 31.

HSBC makes seven hires in sales trading
HSBC has hired seven senior executives across three Asian offices, all focused on Asia-Pacific equities.

Dok Chon joins the Seoul office as head of equity sales trading for Korea. He previously spent three years at Goldman Sachs as a senior sales trader and before that JP Morgan.

Justin Abbiss was hired in Hong Kong as a senior equities sales trader, having held a similar role at Credit Suisse previously.

Kent Chen becomes head of equity sales trading for Taiwan based in Taipei. Before, he worked at brokerage and investment group CLSA.

Danny Holder has been appointed head of equities dealing in Hong Kong. He joins from Oppenheimer Investments’ execution division.

Simmy Lee, a former Mizuho employee, joins the firm’s Hong Kong office as director in its corporate access group. He previously worked at Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley.

Quentin Limouzi has been named director of customised electronic services for Asia Pacific in Hong Kong. He previously worked at BNP Paribas as head of advanced execution for Asia and Japan.

Fiona Wong is now director of equity sales for China and Hong Kong, based in Hong Kong. She moves from Nomura, where she was head of China and Hong Kong sales. She also worked at Credit Suisse and Merrill Lynch.

HSBC has also hired a US-based employee. Aalind Jindal joins the firm’s New York office as director of US Asian equity sales from Citi, where he was an India equity specialist.

These appointments are a combination of replacements, promotions and new positions, a spokesman says, declining to offer more specifics.

Barclays names equity sales head
Barclays has hired Ester Li as head of generalist equity sales for Asia ex-Japan.

She joins the UK bank in Hong Kong and will oversee the generalist equity distribution team across the region. She replaces Anthony Davies, who has taken on the role of senior relationship management for Asia Pacific alongside Deborah Ho.

Li reports to Robert Newman, head of equities distribution for Asia ex-Japan and head of global emerging markets equities distribution.

She joins from Daiwa Capital Markets, where she was regional head of equity sales since 2010. She also held similar roles at Deutsche Bank and ING Barings.

Daiwa did not respond to a request seeking comment.

Sarasin names head of sustainable research
Bank Sarasin has made two appointments in Switzerland, Pierin Menzli as head of sustainable investment research and Philipp Mettler as a sustainable investment analyst.

Menzli had co-founded Contrast Capital, a Zurich-based asset advisory firm, in 2011. Before that, he was head of research at SAM Sustainable Asset Management.

Mettle was previously head of research at Alnua Investment Managers and also a senior equity analyst at SAM Sustainable Asset Management.

Service provider names business development head
Financial Express (FE), a financial services data provider, has hired Hon Wah Choi as director of business development and marketing in Asia. Wah previously worked at Manulife International, where he was an associate vice president of marketing and communications in Asia.

He joins FE’s nine-strong Hong Kong office. FE also has a location in Singapore. A spokeswoman says there are no immediate plans for additional hires, although the firm will continue to “expand in line with their data coverage and as their business continues to grow”.

Other moves reported in AsianInvestor this week:

Axa IM plans trading desk in Hong Kong

Aussie Super council names new CEO

PE advisory firm hires bank exec to lead Asia build-out

BMO plans investment team to run HK funds

Standard Life Investments hires GSAM sales exec

Towers Watson creates regional sovereign role