The newly combined asset manager has filled the post in Shanghai by poaching from a rival created by another big recent merger.
Last month we broke news of Prudential's Asia reshuffle, a change of focus at Willis Towers Watson and Chris Ryan's exit from MSCI, and reported on consolidation and hiring trends.
Fund houses must get better at active management or offer index products, say industry players. The scale that the Standard Life-Aberdeen merger would bring may facilitate such a move.
With Sino-US tensions mounting over Donald Trump's plans for trade protectionism, among other things, mainland institutions are seen to be eyeing foreign assets outside America.
The UK-based insurer says it remains committed to its two remaining markets of Hong Kong and China despite industry headwinds, saying it has switched its focus to affluent clients.
The firm's Asia-Pacific chief executive puts the closure – which follows that of Standard Life in July – down to the business failing to achieve sufficient scale and profitability.