Friends Provident International (FPI) is set to distribute its products in South East Asia after bei...
Friends Provident International (FPI) is set to distribute its products in South East Asia after being granted a licence to operate out of Singapore.
The first product that FPI will launch is a portfolio bond. The bond will offer investors access to an open-ended range of collective investments as well as stocks, shares and cash. It has been targeted towards high net worth individuals and has a minimum investment of $50,000 (£27,000) or Singapore $100,000.
The second product to be launched will be a regular savings plan followed by a unit- linked bond.
Rocco Sepe, managing director of FPI, said: "We have only been selling to the north of Asia through our Hong Kong office. However, the new Singapore licence will open up opportunities for us to distribute our products to a mixture of local and expatriate investors in South East Asia including the Malaysian and Thai markets.
"Singapore is a market where savings are important for the local population, as it is mandatory to save for their pensions."
Entering the South East Asian market is a new step for FPI and the company has been in talks with the regulators for the past year, Sepe explained. He said there was an increasing need for financial products in the region after the Singapore authorities created an advisory market in 2001, and believed it was an excellent opportunity for FPI to step up its presence in the region. Last year, 45% of FPI's new business came from Hong Kong, and Sepe expects a similar outcome from Singapore.
FPI also has plans to market personal pension products to the German market this summer. Its private banking assurance arm Lombard intends to open a branch in Switzerland.
FPI operates out of Hong Kong, the Middle East and Europe.
FPI granted Singapore licence
Portfolio bond to be the first product launched
Pension saving is compulsory in Singapore
A regular savings plan will follow
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