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T Rowe to launch three funds in HK

The Baltimore-headquartered firm considers the Hong Kong retail market a key part of its sales strategy.

Its latest funds to be registered for retail sale are the Diversified Income Bond Fund, the Frontier Markets Equity Fund and the US Blue Chip Fund, all of which received authorisation from the regulator this month.

The funds have been available previously to professional investors in Hong Kong, including private bank and institutions, according to a Hong Kong-based spokeswoman of the firm. The funds are also available in Singapore, but only to the Lion City’s accredited investors, according to data from FE Analytics.

The new products in Hong Kong follow the roll out of four fixed income funds last year.

The firm first received an SFC authorisation for its funds in 2016, the regulator’s records show. Today it has 13 SFC-registered funds. All of the firm’s funds in Hong Kong are Luxembourg-domiciled Ucits Sicav funds.

The Hong Kong retail market is a regional target, the spokeswoman said. “We have seen initial signs of success, and will continue to build out our Asia intermediary distribution network and explore opportunities to register more Ucits Sicav funds with the SFC.”

The firm also sells products elsewhere in Asia. In January,  it started selling two income funds in Korea with a local partner, Korea Investment Management.

In September, it partnered with Bangkok-based Land and Houses Fund Management to launch a global income fund for domestic investors in Thailand.

Regional reshuffle

The firm has also recently made several Asia appointments.

Last month, it promoted Elsie Chan to the newly-created role of head of global investment management services for Asia ex-Japan, which includes the firm’s intermediary and institutional business in the region. Chan first joined the firm in 2015 to work on T Rowe’s intermediary business strategy.

In February, the firm appointed Wenting Shen as Hong Kong-based solutions strategist for Asia-Pacific within the firm’s Asia-Pacific multi-asset division team. She reports to Thomas Poullaouec, who joined the firm in September last year from State Street Global Advisors to head the Asia-Pacific multi-asset solutions team. Also based in Hong Kong, Poullaouec works with institutional investors in the region.

In December, the firm added to its Australian distribution team with the appointments of Ben Daly as Sydney-based relationship manager for institutions and Richard Li as senior product manager, according to a statement.

Last year, in Japan, Kuniaki Doi was appointed head of retail business and Yasuo Miyajima, head of institutional investors business.

In Asia-Pacific, the firm has 71 people on the investment side, according to the spokeswoman.

Globally, the firm reported that it managed $1.07trn in assets as of the end of July.

Part of the Bonhill Group.