June 15, 2016 / 10:56 AM / 4 years ago

Nomura sees its Asia ex-Japan wealth assets rising 15-20 percent: executive

Deputy head of Nomura's Asia private banking division Amanda Chen speaks to journalists during the Reuters Global Wealth Management Summit in Singapore, June 15, 2016. REUTERS/Raj Narwani

SINGAPORE/HONG KONG (Reuters) - Nomura Holdings expects to grow its Asia ex-Japan wealth management assets by 15 percent to 20 percent a year over the next two to three years by tapping a wider pool of wealthy clients, a senior executive at Japan’s biggest brokerage said.

“We have grown 20 percent, in terms of AUM (assets under management) growth,” Amanda Chen, deputy head of Nomura’s wealth management division for Asia ex-Japan, told the Reuters Global Wealth Management Summit in Singapore.

“I hope to maintain a growth target of 15 to 20 percent in the next two to three years or so.”

Nomura, which in April axed a brokerage unit and hundreds of jobs in Europe and the Americas, competes with rivals including Credit Suisse and UBS for a bigger share of the wealth management business in Asia.

Chen declined to give the total assets under management in its wealth unit in Asia excluding Japan. A Nomura spokesman said the bank’s total wealth management assets were at 18.4 trillion yen ($177 billion) in Asia including Japan at end 2015.

Chen was hired by Nomura last year from Morgan Stanley to spearhead expansion in Asia, which has 4.7 million individuals with $1 million in liquid assets and is the largest and fastest growing region for wealth managers.

Many global private banks have put Asia at the center of their growth strategy, hiring thousands of people among themselves and tapping new customer segments in a region expected to soon boast more billionaires than the United States.

Chen said Nomura boosted its wealth management headcount by about 25-30 percent in 2015 in Asia excluding Japan, taking the tally to between 150 and 200. The business will add bankers “selectively” in the coming years, she said.

(Corrects story after Nomura spokesman revises assets number in paragraph 5 to 18.4 trillion yen from 18.7 trillion. Also changes dollar conversion)

Reporting by Saeed Azhar, Sumeet Chatterjee and Paige Lim; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman

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