Reyl Inflows Put $10 Billion Target Within Reach for Swiss BankGiles Broom
Reyl Group said client inflows in the first four months of the year put the Geneva-based private bank and asset manager on course to reach its goal of 10 billion Swiss francs ($10.4 billion) of managed assets by 2015.
Reyl attracted net new money of 2.3 billion francs last year as assets under management increased more than 60 percent to 7.3 billion francs, Chief Executive Officer Francois Reyl said in an interview at the firm’s offices on Rue du Rhone, Geneva’s priciest shopping street. About 500 million francs of inflows were at its institutional asset management unit.
Reyl was one of the banks used by former French budget minister Jerome Cahuzac, who resigned in March and later admitted he stashed 600,000 euros ($777,000) of undeclared funds outside France, Tages-Anzeiger reported April 6. Reyl, who can’t disclose client names in line with Swiss banking secrecy laws, said the bank’s customer base has remained “supportive.”
“Recent events have not impacted our ability to continue to grow our business,” he said. “The net new money in wealth management onshore activities has continued to be strong.”
Cahuzac denied for months a Dec. 4 Mediapart report he hid funds offshore, including with UBS AG in Geneva. Cahuzac, a former plastic surgeon and Socialist lawmaker, was identified in a recorded telephone conversation referring to the existence of a Swiss account, the Paris prosecutor’s office said on March 19, the day of his resignation. He has since repatriated the money held outside France to pay his debts to the French authorities.
Reyl and UBS provided French judges with evidence about a Swiss account held by Cahuzac from 1992 through an administrative assistance request in March, according to a statement from Geneva’s public prosecutor.
Onshore businesses in Geneva and Paris helped boost the bank’s assets, said Reyl, adding that the company also attracted clients by opening a Zurich-based unit for tax-declared Americans and an office in Lugano, Switzerland. Reyl also has a London office to market funds and advisory services to wealthy non-domiciled U.K. residents from the Middle East, Russia and central Asia.
Reyl is trying to attract clients in “less crowded” markets outside of Europe and is considering opening an office in the Middle East, the CEO said.
Assets managed for institutions rose to 3.3 billion francs from 2.2 billion francs in the first quarter of 2013, according to the bank. Profit climbed 70 percent to 8.8 million francs last year.