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Deutsche Bank to Focus on Russia’s Rich After Fund Merger

Deutsche Bank AG will focus on wealthy clients in Russia following the merger of its local asset manager and private-banking business, according to the company’s Russian head.

“We will change the focus in the reorganization toward more people who cover wealthy individuals,” Pavel Teplukhin, 48, said in an interview in Moscow today. “Mutual funds will be organized through third-party distribution” with Citigroup Inc. and “other banks in Moscow because we don’t have any retail network here,” he said.

Germany’s biggest bank agreed to buy the 60 percent in Deutsche UFG Capital Management it didn’t already own a year ago. UFG Capital, which managed about 300 million euros ($389.8 million) in November 2011 mostly for private and institutional clients, will be merged with Deutsche Bank Private Wealth Management as part of a global push to cut its costs in asset management and boost earnings.

Deutsche Bank has cut an unspecified number of traders in Russia because of a drop in trading volumes, Teplukhin said.

“That’s the only part of Deutsche Bank Russia where we had staff changes,” Teplukhin said.

Total headcount has increased to 1,120 in Russia from 1,048 a year earlier, a Deutsche Bank spokesman in Moscow said. Profit in Russia surged to 45 million euros for the first nine months of this year from 5 million in the year-earlier period, according to a company presentation today.

Equity Deals

Deutsche Bank remains committed to Russia and won’t be relocating bankers to London, where the largest Russian equity deals by OAO Sberbank and OAO Megafon took place this year, Teplukhin said. The bank slid to 14th in arranging equity deals this year from second a year ago, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It remained second for advising on mergers and acquisitions, behind Bank of America Corp., the data show.

“At the moment it happens most investors in Russian securities are outside of Russia, but we are not shifting people to London,” Teplukhin said. “We have a lot of important business and important links with people here.”

Credit Suisse Group AG, the second-largest Swiss lender, is moving its Russian capital-markets and advisory businesses from Moscow to London to cut costs, two people with knowledge of the matter said last week.

Teplukhin, named head of Russian operations in September, said he stepped down from the board of VTB Group, the country’s second-biggest lender, during the summer. He said he “will probably step down” as chairman of the board of Forex Club, an online brokerage, in early 2013.

Teplukhin, an architect of Russia’s federal law on mutual funds, was a managing director at Troika Dialog and chairman of its asset-management unit until his departure more than two years ago. In 2008, he said 30 percent of the people on Forbes magazine’s Russian rich list were his clients.

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