HSBC sets up private banking business in Thailand, second in Southeast Asia

FILE PHOTO: HSBC logo is seen on a branch bank in the financial district in New York, U.S., August 7, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - HSBC Holdings PLC said on Monday it had set up a new private banking business in Thailand, the Asia-focused lender’s second onshore expansion in Southeast Asia, as it seeks to grab a bigger share of the growing rich population.

HSBC said the new private bank, which is in one of the most promising wealth markets in Asia, will help it provide clients with access to international capital markets by leveraging its existing infrastructure of advisory and investment methodologies in Asia.

“In Thailand and across ASEAN, private wealth is often created and built through business growth and expansion and as intra-regional trade and activity rebound, we expect commercial, people and wealth flows to increase,” said Philip Kunz, HSBC’s head of global private banking for Southeast Asia.

Last year, HSBC combined its global private banking and retail wealth businesses to create a new unit that manages more than $1.4 trillion in clients’ assets, with half coming from Asia.

The team in Thailand will cover client management and advisory services while clients’ assets will be booked in HSBC Private Banking in Singapore, a regional wealth management hub.

Credit Suisse had set up its Thai wealth management business in 2016 and Julius Baer teamed up with Siam Commercial Bank in 2018 to cater to high net worth individuals.

Reporting by Anshuman Daga; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel