Published: Fri, May 12, 2017
Money | By Armando Alvarado

NAB offload overseas business

NAB offload overseas business

When the deal is completed, OCBC Bank will gain access to about 11,000 new customers primarily from the affluent segment - more than 7,000 in Singapore and about 4,000 in Hong Kong.

The transaction is expected to be completed before the end of the calendar year and will not have a material financial impact on NAB.

NAB has about 11,000 customers across the two cities.

Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. said Thursday it was buying National Australia Bank's wealth management business in Singapore and Hong Kong.

Bank of Singapore, OCBC's private bank, has been active in acquiring private banking businesses and clients.

That will boost the Singapore lender's footprint in private wealth, having purchased one of Barclays' wealth and investment management units in November.

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Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ.AX) previous year agreed to sell its wealth and retail businesses in five Asian markets to Singapore's biggest lender, DBS Group Holdings Ltd (DBSM.SI), for around S$110 million.

"The addition of the mortgage portfolio not only augments our existing loans book for local property financing, but also serves as a good base for financing customers who have interest in acquiring properties overseas", said Mr Na Wu Beng, Chief Executive Officer, OCBC Wing Hang Bank.

In April 2016, Union Bancaire Privée (UBP) closed the acquisition of Coutts' wealth management operations in Hong Kong and Singapore, which brought $9bn to the bank's platform.

Recent years have been turbulent for banks' wealth management operations with a number of mid-sized players, including ABN AMRO, Coutts and Societe Generale, deciding to sell their wealth units.

"The industry is at an inflection point where it is necessary for banks to demonstrate commitment to the region and be clear about core strengths". The only remaining Premium Wealth market in Asia for NAB will be Japan after the sale.

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