GAM joins rush to Asia growth with new Singapore office

GAM, the Swiss asset manager, has opened an office in Singapore, joining a growing list of foreign asset managers that are growing their presence in the lucrative Asian market.

The Zurich-headquartered firm has hired Terence Bong to head its operations in Singapore and the South East Asia region.

Before joining GAM, Bong worked at Franklin Templeton, where he was head of wholesale for South East Asia, where he oversaw distribution of products to private banks, independent financial advisers, insurance companies and consumer banks across Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines.

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GAM said his appointment and the new Singapore office “underscores the importance of the Asia-Pacific region”, where it has an established client base. GAM has existing offices in Hong Kong, Tokyo and Sydney.

Peter Sanderson, GAM chief executive, said: “The establishment of an office in Singapore, together with Terence’s appointment, represents an important strategic step for the firm. We are planning to grow our business in Asia, including by responding to growing client demand for sustainable solutions in the region.”

Several foreign asset managers have grown their footprints in Asia recently, particularly in China where there is a growing wealth management market.

Goldman Sachs Asset Management announced on 25 May that it will partner with ICBC Wealth Management, a subsidiary of the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, to offer investment products to Chinese investors.

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According to Goldman Sachs’ own research, investable assets held by Chinese households are set to pass $70tn by 2030, with about 60% of that allocated to “non-deposit products” including mutual funds and wealth management vehicles.

Amundi, Europe’s largest asset manager, received regulatory approval to begin operations in mainland China in November 2020, nine months after it announced a joint venture with Bank of China’s wealth management arm, in which the asset manager holds a 55% stake.

Meanwhile Baillie Gifford, the Edinburgh-headquartered asset manager, established an office in Shanghai last year.

To contact the author of this story with feedback or news, email David Ricketts

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