Swiss and a number of other international banks - sometimes working with local partners - are stepping up their presence in Thailand's wealth market.
The former Credit Suisse senior figure who left to head up a Julius Baer joint venture in Thailand is taking on a wider Thailand role at his old bank, which he had re-joined in February this year.
Edwin Tan has been appointed head of wealth management for Thailand, adding to his role as head of advisory and sales for Thailand, with immediate effect, Credit Suisse said in a statement yesterday.
The Swiss bank’s move highlights how Thailand has become a wealth management hotspot in recent years.
“Thailand is a key growth market for Credit Suisse. We have been serving Thai clients since 2000, providing financing and advisory services, ranging from capital markets transactions, M&A advisory, structured finance as well as trading,” Chris Prasertsintanah, Thailand country manager, Credit Suisse, said. “With a strong wealth management team on board, we continue to be in a unique position where we can deliver comprehensive solutions to our Thai clients for both their personal wealth and their businesses, as they increasingly look to diversify their assets and expand their businesses.”
Tan will report functionally to Marcus Slöör, market group head for Thailand and Vietnam. and locally to Prasertsintanah, with a dotted reporting line to Claude Harbonn, head of investment consulting, Singapore.
Prior to re-joining Credit Suisse earlier this year, Tan was head of investment advisory and solutions for SCB Julius Baer where he built the foundation of the joint venture for those firms’ Thailand business. Tan has spent a total of 11 years with Credit Suisse in various senior positons including head of Singapore/Thailand Investment Consulting from 2012 to 2018.
In January this year, rival Swiss bank Julius Baer said that its JV, called SCB Julius Baer, appointed Lalitphat Toranavikrai as CEO to replace Jiralawan Tangitvet who left in late 2019 after being in the post for seven months.
Among Thailand developments with other firms, DBS Bank has partnered with its Thailand securities business to double wealth assets under management in the country to S$8 billion ($5.82 billion) by 2023, another sign of firms chasing high net worth business. The bank intends to double its headcount in Thailand. The partnership brought together DBS Bank and DBS Vickers Securities (Thailand).
There are more than 122,000 HNW individuals in Thailand (as of 2017), almost equal to the number in Singapore. Thai wealth assets under management grew at a compound annual growth rate of 12.7 per cent between 2010 and 2017. This fact has not gone unnoticed: In early March, Liechtenstein-based LGT created a Thai business, called LGT Securities (Thailand) Limited. Some firms have been in the country for some time, such as Credit Suisse. Thailand’s overall wealth market is estimated to be around $300 billion, with a rapidly growing population of high net worth individuals of approximately 30,000, according to the Boston Consulting Group Global Wealth Report 2017. Thailand also operates a form of what are dubbed "golden visas" for HNW individuals.