Marco Bardelli of BDG Singapore reveals the firm’s growth strategy in Asia, especially in relation to getting more assets from local clients as it educates them further about its services and approach to asset allocation.
Date: Dec 2011
The group is also currently present in China, with a joint venture in the fund management space, and is focused on growing its business further in the region, he added.
To achieve these ambitions, Bardelli said his main goal at the moment is to increase the amount of business that the firm does with Asian clients – and currently seven of the firm’s relationship managers are Asian.
At the same time, however, not all the Asian markets are familiar with external asset management (EAM) and the related services, so a lot of client education has to be done, he added.
One of the most interesting aspects of BDG’s activities, said Bardelli, is that its customers can choose from a wide array of custodians, so have access to a truly open-architecture platform.
He said he has seen that, depending on the market, there is more focus on alpha rather than on sigma (preserving the portfolio in terms of the volatility), but with more education, there is likely to be more interest from clients in wealth preservation.
Within this, the firm has been expanding its coverage on Asian asset classes, and plans to use this as a key focus to attract clients in 2012, said Bardelli.
Over the next 12 months, Bardelli said he expects to see a number of consolidations in Asian wealth management, especially in the EAM sector given upcoming regulations which might make it more viable for some firms to group together with other players.
In general, he said it is likely to be a tough year for the industry, with net new money not growing as fast as the growth in wealth – because, he said, some investors are still relying on cash or quasi-cash positions, or are still looking at real estate, which at the end of the day, will have to be a component of a global asset allocation.