HSBC opens private banking for high-net-worth Thais

With an eye on more prosperous post-pandemic times, HSBC opened a private banking business in Thailand last week to cater to high-net-worth Thais. It is the bank’s second such venture in Southeast Asia and the third international bank to tap into the elite Thai market.

Thailand’s economic and business freedom has allowed entrepreneurs to excel and accumulate significant wealth. The Kingdom has 30 billionaires and over 64,000 millionaires. Few banks have designed services specifically for them.

Before HSBC decided to enter this market, Credit Suisse had set up a Thai wealth management business in 2016, and Julius Baer teamed up with Siam Commercial Bank in 2018 to cater to high-net-worth individuals.

“In Thailand and across ASEAN (10-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations), private wealth is often created and built through business growth and expansion. As intra-regional trade and activity rebound, we expect commercial, people and wealth flows to increase,” said Philip Kunz, HSBC Head of Global Private Banking for Southeast Asia.

Kunz said that HSBC combined its global private banking and retail wealth businesses last year to create a new unit that managed more than $1.4 trillion in clients’ assets. In a century that some predict Asia will rise as the predominant economic region, half of the HSBC unit’s customers are from Asia.

Kunz described Thailand and the region as one of the most promising wealth markets in Asia. He said that HSBC’s private banking unit “will help it provide clients with access to international capital markets by leveraging its existing infrastructure of advisory and investment methodologies in Asia.”

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