Singapore is attracting private wealth management business at the expense of Hong Kong, according to offshore law firm Ogier.
“In Asia, private wealth has been woefully under-serviced,” said Duncan Smith, managing partner for Asia at the firm’s Hong Kong office. He added that this related both to a lack of service providers and the fact that Asian investors have historically tended to manage their own portfolios.
“Asian investors are more entrepreneurial than the average Swiss investor,” he said. “They are looking for triple-digit returns rather than just beating inflation, and they are typically suspicious of wealth management services.”
However, Smith added that there is now an emerging class of investors using trusts, and it is clear from how well some wealth management firms have done in Singapore that there is demand. “Singapore is working very hard to develop. The government is doing all the right things and has created a very supportive environment for wealth managers,” he concluded.
Ogier was this week attending the first BOAO conference to be held outside Asia. The two-day conference, at London’s Westminster Central Hall, gave entrepreneurs from China and elsewhere in Asia a forum both to seek funding for their enterprises and to find private wealth services for themselves.
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