Credit Suisse Names Malhotra to Run Business for Ultra-Rich

  • Malhotra given title of executive vice chairman, Asia-Pacific
  • Chow and Low become regional co-heads of investment bank

Credit Suisse Group AG appointed its investment-banking chief in the Asia-Pacific region, Vikram Malhotra, to run a newly created unit serving ultra-rich entrepreneurs.

Vikram Malhotra
Vikram Malhotra
Photographer: Jerome Favre/Bloomberg

Malhotra will have the title of executive vice chairman for Asia-Pacific, according to an internal memo, a copy of which was obtained by Bloomberg News. His unit will focus on financing wealthy clients, co-invest with those clients in their businesses and offer
them the opportunity to invest in each other, the memo showed.

Credit Suisse tapped Mervyn Chow and Edwin Low to succeed Malhotra, naming them co-heads of the investment banking and capital markets business in the region, said a person with knowledge of the matter who asked not to be identified. Sheel Kohli, a Hong Kong-based spokesman for the Swiss bank, declined to comment. The Wall Street Journal reported the appointments earlier on Tuesday.

Chief Executive Officer Tidjane Thiam is seeking to expand in managing money for wealthy clients across Asia, using the firm’s investment bank to help Asian billionaires with illiquid assets who need access to financing. The second-largest Swiss bank after UBS Group AG remains “very focused” on emerging markets including China, where “we have been underweight,” Thiam said in an interview with Bloomberg Television last week.

Thiam last month announced a plan to reorganize Credit Suisse along geographical lines, cut as many as 5,600 jobs and focus more on wealth management while shrinking and splitting up the investment bank.

Credit Suisse estimates that the number of ultra-high net worth individuals in China has risen 24 percent since mid-2014 to 9,555, the fastest increase in the world, according to the bank’s Global Wealth Databook 2015 released in October. Ultra-high net worth individuals are defined as those with more than $50 million, the report said.

The lender this week appointed at least five executives to senior roles at its Swiss division, including heads of wealth management and investment banking. Thiam is making the Swiss bank and the Asian division separate units in a strategic overhaul.

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