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Vontobel to enlarge Asian footprint with new offering for growth market of external asset managers

Media release

Published on 30.10.2018 CET

Vontobel intends to harness the huge growth potential for business with external asset managers and family offices who seek services for external asset managers in Asia by building up local expertise. Georg von Wattenwyl has been appointed to develop the business and take worldwide responsibility for the sale of EAM-related products to family offices. As head of Vontobel's Financial Products, Advisory & Distribution unit for 11 years, he has been in charge of global advisory services and the distribution of Vontobel financial products. Georg von Wattenwyl will be in charge of the development of the business in Asia and head the new team from 1 January 2019.

Vontobel expects the Asian market for external asset managers (EAMs) and family offices who seek services for external asset managers to grow by more than 30% per year. In the two key Asian financial centers of Singapore and Hong Kong alone, there are around 150 EAMs and multi-family offices (MFOs) providing high-net-worth clients with investment banking, asset management, and wealth management services. Together, they manage client assets totaling some CHF 100 billion. Added to these are a comparable number of single-family offices (SFOs) with a similar volume of client assets. "In view of the global trend in assets owned by ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs), the transfer of assets from one generation to the next, and the related need for international diversification, Asia has attractive growth potential in this area. Vontobel is expanding its regional reach, subject to relevant regulatory approvals being obtained, to secure access to global investment expertise and has a globally established digital platform for EAMs and family offices in EAMNet. On top of this, Vontobel can offer its partners, services for dealing with US persons in Asia," says Brian Fischer, Head of External Asset Managers (EAM) at Vontobel.

"Asia is one of the focus markets in which Vontobel aims to take advantage of the vast scope for growth. As an internationally active asset manager with a Swiss booking platform and a leading digital platforms such as EAMNet, Vontobel can add real value for EAMs in Asia. The appointment of Georg von Wattenwyl, whose many years of service in a management role have been instrumental in positioning Vontobel as a leader in financial products, underscores our ambitions for this region," adds Roger Studer, Head of Vontobel Investment Banking. Georg von Wattenwyl, meanwhile, comments, "I am looking forward to this new challenge, which presents me with an ideal opportunity to combine my considerable experience and specialist know-how with a new dimension of entrepreneurial responsibility."

Global responsibility for family offices bundled

In addition to EAMs in Asia, Georg von Wattenwyl will also take global responsibility for the sale of EAM-related products to family offices. "Georg von Wattenwyl's experience and depth of knowledge make him the right person to drive our EAM business with family offices forward internationally. Here too, we want to add value through our professional services. Thanks in no small part to our special ownership structure, with the Vontobel family as anchor shareholder, we are familiar with the needs and expectations of this specific group of clients," says Roger Studer.


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At Vontobel, we actively shape the future. We create and pursue opportunities with determination. We master what we do – and we only do what we master. This is how we get our clients ahead. As a globally operating financial expert with Swiss roots, we specialize in wealth management, active asset management and investment solutions. We empower our colleagues to take ownership of their work and bring opportunities to life. Because we are convinced that successful investing starts with assuming personal responsibility. We relentlessly question the achieved, striving to exceed the goals and expectations of our clients. The registered shares of the Vontobel Holding AG are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange. The Vontobel families’ close ties to the company guarantee our entrepreneurial independence. We consider the resulting freedom an obligation to assume social responsibility as well. As of June 30, 2018 Vontobel held over CHF 254 billion of client assets. Throughout our 26 offices worldwide more than 2,000 employees service our clients.

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