“We have been working with [third-party] fund distributors in Hong Kong for more than a decade. We already had well-established relationships with DBS’s and HSBC’s private banks to distribute our funds on their platforms to accredited investors,” Jessica Jones, head of GSAM’s retail client business in Asia Pacific ex-Japan, told FSA in an interview.
“But, last October’s launch of seven funds in Hong Kong was our first foray into the territory’s retail market,” she said.
GSAM made seven mutual funds available to Hong Kong retail investors in October, after receiving approval from the Securities and Futures Commission. The firm had previously only sold to institutional investors and private banks in the territory.
The newly authorised products comprised three quant funds focused on emerging markets, Europe and global core equity portfolios, three emerging market bond funds and a global high yield fund.
Two of them, the $6.1bn Global Core Equity Portfolio and the $1.37bn Emerging Markets Corporate Bond Portfolio funds, are already sold through the partnership arrangement with DBS and HSBC.
DBS on-boarded both funds last January, and HSBC on-boarded the Global Core Equity Portfolio Fund earlier this month.
“DBS and HSBC are two of the most regional dominant banks, and we expect both banks to add the other funds to their platforms when a gap opens up,” said Jones.
As part of its expansion into the Hong Kong mutual fund market, GSAM has also been on hiring spree. Recently, it has taken on four new Cantonese -speaking staff who are focussed on Hong Kong’s retail market, said Jones.
These include Gladys Chan, who was poached from First State to build out the firm’s retail distribution network in the territory.
“The next steps will be to partner with one or two more distributors and seek authorisation to offer more Goldman Sachs funds to Hong Kong retail,” said Jones.
In Singapore, the firm has been selling funds to retail investors since 2016. In total, GSAM distributes 18 retail funds in Singapore and has partnered with DBS, Citibank, HSBC and Standard Chartered Bank, Jones told FSA in a previous interview.
Performance of GS Global Core Equity Portfolio Fund and GS Emerging Markets Corporate Bond Portfolio Fund vs sector averages