Posted inIndustry views

What does the industry think? October 3

In a new weekly feature, FSA finds the only executives in Asia willing to go on record and comment on key investment issues. This week: financial firm security.

A few financial centres in Singapore and Hong Kong have installed layers of lobby security, demanding IDs and personal information from visitors and in some cases photographing them. Critics say the high level security raises business costs, creates unnecessary delays and exists only to sell tenants prestige.






“If lobby security was not there, somebody could take the lift to our floor, pick the locked glass office door, fight off dozens of employees, break into my office, crack my computer password, navigate through our proprietary software and actually see my portfolio allocation. In Singapore and Hong Kong, we live with that threat every day.”

Robert Ruderschmidt, portfolio manager, Overflowing Alpha Asset Management








“We need to have a fast-track lane for the lunch delivery guy. He spends 20 minutes to get through security lines to our offices and usually the chao fan is lukewarm.”

Louie Zheng, head of discretionary mandates, Global Behemoth Private Bank






“It impresses clients and I’m on board for anything that helps sales. The building management charges us, but we take that cost, call it a `security contribution’ and wrap it inside our funds’ other fees.”

Julio Pachón, head of global distribution, Thrifty Asset Management




“We disagree that we are buying prestige. We strongly believe our firm has earned prestige by offering clients exciting and differentiated propositions. However, we need to protect the assets that give us that prestige, so we are asking for men in black suits with earbud microphones to be posted outside the marketing offices.”

Pollyanna Sim, head of marketing for Asia-Pacific, StraightTalk Fund Management Group



Part of the Mark Allen Group.