Best Private Bank – Asia Pacific
The private banking business in APAC performed strongly last year, despite a mixed market environment. For 3Q2019, we achieved several record performances, delivering AUM of CHF 222 billion, a 7% growth year-on-year. We also achieved record net interest income and higher transaction-based revenues, with mandate penetration and volumes at record levels.
Our productivity, as measured by revenue per RM, is industry leading and we are committed to developing new tools and enhancing processes to continue to bolster the productivity of our RMs, allowing them to focus on deepening their relationship with clients. Looking ahead, we will continue to focus on enhancing our capabilities, extending our reach and leveraging the tremendous opportunities in Asia Pacific.
To effectively bank Asia’s entrepreneurs, a bank needs to be ‘local’ and at full capability wherever its clients are and wherever their activities may be. To this end, Credit Suisse outdoes its global peers in its regional footprint and booking centre coverage, and in its integrated platform, which respects the multi-market and onshore/offshore demands of entrepreneurs.
Moreover, the difference between Credit Suisse and its peers lies in the quality of execution. Banks that are fragmented in terms of structure or processes, or that have half-a-foot in a market, struggle to build meaningful client relationships in this region. This is where Credit Suisse excels, as evidenced by the litany of flagship deals the bank notched up in 2019 and across markets. These achievements speak not only to the quality of the Credit Suisse team, but to the fact that the coordination between its divisions and markets, onshore and offshore, is seamless relative to its peers.
The result is that Credit Suisse’s client relationships tend to be comparatively sticky and institutionalised and, crucially, more multifaceted than what many other banks in the region enjoy. There are specific reasons for this, not all of which can be pointed out here. But the Judges would like to single out the lubricating role of the APAC Financing Group, the depth and breadth of Credit Suisse’s products and solutions suite (particularly on the bespoke and exclusive side) and critically, the quality of the bank’s advisory. Credit Suisse, more than any other private bank in Asia, is able to feed the right ideas to the right clients at the right time. This is in part due to the bank’s first-rate IC team, as evidenced by the take-up of ideas and alpha generated throughout 2019. And it is also due to the power of Credit Suisse Invest, the bank’s digital advisory solution, which fulfils a growing desire by clients to interact digitally with the bank, and ultimately institutionalises relationships.
Furthermore, Credit Suisse, over the years, has demonstrated that it is ahead of the curve in working with internal and third-party providers to develop and distribute products that resonate with clients because they are timely, effective, and differentiated. This is well evidenced on the managed solutions side, which has led the way in the industry in terms of FMPs and exclusive thematic plays such as smart mobility and digital healthcare.
The bank has been making strides in its DPM business as well, which achieved record inflows and strong performance across the board last year, which speaks to the quality of the CIO office, which won the ‘Best Private Bank – CIO Office’ award in 2019 on account of performance generated and content delivery.
Credit Suisse is deeply tuned in to fundamental changes that are reshaping the wealth management industry and is very much on the front line in adapting to these emerging and disruptive trends. Its digital prowess, helmed by Credit Suisse’s Digital Private Banking platform, is widely recognised.
Beyond this, the bank has shown its commitment to sustainable investing in the region by making key hires in 2019, led the way in terms of preparing for Hong Kong’s complex products regime, and is forging new ground in the quest to bank the next generation. The next-gen point is important, because it is a mission shared by most of Asia’s private banks. The Judges were truly impressed by how Credit Suisse, beyond the excellent YIO, systematically maps, tracks, and targets next gen individuals internally and externally — with results, which is a step beyond what its peers are doing.
Ultimately, the net result of this hard work and dedication is robust and sustainable financial performance. On all fronts — net new money flows, revenue by streams, RM productivity, mandates penetration — Credit Suisse outperforms, and that with an RM team half the size of its nearest competitors.
Finally, Credit Suisse deserves recognition for the work it is doing on the human resources, training, and corporate social responsibility fronts. An inordinate amount of consideration and effort goes into nurturing the culture and upskilling of staff and, as a result, the bank is arguably the most ambitious and empowered at the individual level in the region. More so, Credit Suisse has successfully embedded in its culture a sense of social duty, which in this current environment, is cause for recognition.
Credit Suisse is Asian Private Banker’s Best Private Bank – Asia Pacific for 2019.