BofA Names Ex-Mitsubishi UFJ Tie-Up Chief Tokyo Branch Head

Bank of America Corp. named Miwa Ohmori, the former chief executive officer of Merrill Lynch & Co.’s private banking joint venture with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., as its Tokyo branch manager.

Ohmori, 50, is currently vice chairman at Merrill Lynch Japan Securities Co. and will start her new role effective Aug. 1, according to a statement from the U.S. lender. She joined Merrill Lynch Japan in 1995 and served as chief executive of Mitsubishi UFJ Merrill Lynch PB Securities Co. for three and a half years before the tie-up was disbanded.

Ohmori holds a MBA in finance and accounting from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and attended Harvard University’s Women’s Executive Program, according to biographical material provided by Bank of America. She also has a BA in Economics from Japan’s Keio University.

The Tokyo branch manager post became vacant in February after Tim Latimore was appointed Bank of America country executive and president of Merrill Lynch Japan Securities. Ohmori will report to Latimore.

She will relinquish her roles at Merrill Lynch Japan Securities effective July 31 in line with Japanese regulations, according to the statement. Ohmori has also previously served as head of structured products at Merrill Lynch Japan.

Mitsubishi UFJ agreed to buy Charlotte, North Carolina-based Bank of America’s 49 percent stake in their private bank venture in December 2012. The tie-up began operations in May 2006 and had 1.8 trillion yen ($17.6 billion) in deposited assets and 25 billion yen in operating revenue as of March 2012, according to a company release at the time.

The venture changed its name to Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley PB Securities Co. at the start of the year. Mitsubishi UFJ and New-York based Morgan Stanley operate two investment banking joint ventures in Japan following the Japanese bank’s $9 billion investment in the U.S. firm at the height of the global credit crisis in 2008.

Bank of America’s Tokyo branch dates back to 1947, according to the lender’s Japanese-language website. The branch offers services including currency and trade financing to both Japanese and overseas companies with bases in Japan, according to the website.

After Latimore moved to his new position in February, Koichi Kagawa served as acting branch manager. Kagawa will return to his previous role as deputy branch manager from next month under Ohmori.

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