HSBC is to introduce a cash-plus product to the intermediary market, similar to DWS Ratebuster, following the hiring of Andy Clark as head of retail plus four other ex-DWS sales staff.
HSBC's head of distribution Geoff Cheetham said the hires are aimed at refocusing the group's message to advisers on its core strengths. These areas include Far East and emerging market equities and bonds as well as UK products, such as Bob Morris' UK Freestyle fund.
Also, HSBC's structured product branch Sinopia has the derivatives experience needed for a cash-plus product.
Creating the alpha-focused Halbis brand a year ago, the group is intending funds that fall under this to be the core of its intermediary offering. This would include its Freestyle portfolios and most of its actively-managed retail funds. HSBC is also planning further additions to this range, bringing versions of existing products in its Luxembourg Sicav onshore.
At the top of the list is the group's Brazil, Russia, India and China (Bric) portfolio, plus some Asian and global yield products. Cheetham noted the group has an interesting Asian High Yield fund that could be of interest to UK investors plus some bond funds that until now have only been available to institutional investors.
There is no set timeframe for the launch of these vehicles as Clark said the group wants to finish restructuring the sales team and developing its sales message to IFAs before flooding them with products.
HSBC's existing sales team of five, plus the four ex-DWS people are to be restructured on a regional basis, away from its current focus on key accounts. Joining Clark from DWS is Dan Rudd, who will look after investment partners, such as platforms, Elliot Fowles, who will be responsible for private client stockbrokers, and Damien Yeomans, who will focus on intermediaries. Also joining the group is David Chellew on the investment communications side.
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