Julius Baer agrees on strategic partnership with Bank of China

Julius Bär has entered into a strategic partnership with the Bank of China (BOC). Under the terms of the deal, the two refer clients to each other and undertake joint marketing activities. Julius Bär said it would also integrate the Bank of China (Suisse).

BOC, a state-owned commercial bank and the oldest bank in China, will refer clients with international private banking needs outside the Chinese mainland to Julius Bär. Clients of Julius Bär requiring banking services in China will be referred to BOC. They will also cooperate in product distribution, financial market research and joint initiatives including investment conferences.

Boris Collardi, chief executive of Julius Bär, said: “The cooperation with Bank of China will lead Julius Bär to partner with one of the top players in the Chinese mainland and internationally.

“In addition, in future the partnership offers the potential for Julius Bär to gain further access to the Chinese mainland, one of the world’s most important and fastest-growing wealth markets.” 

Li Lihui, vice-chairman and president of Bank of China, said: “Our international private clients have become much more demanding in recent years. Julius Bär is for us an outstanding partner, our co-operation can better serve the needs of our clients with private banking requirements. The co-operation with Julius Bär instantly complements our existing private banking capabilities.”

Separately, Julius Bar also announced its first-half figures for 2012. The Swiss bank’s assets under management grew 5% since the end of 2011, reaching SFr179bn ($180.5bn), a record high for Julius Bär.

The bank said new money came from growth in emerging markets of Asia and the Middle East, but also from private banking business in Germany. Total client assets rose 4% to reach SFr269bn. 

Collardi said: “Julius Bär’s growth strategy remained well on track in the first half of 2012 as evidenced by the strong net new money inflows. At the same time, the ongoing economic and political uncertainty, dominated by the eurozone crisis, continued to frame the market environment. Against this background, our clients maintained their overall cautious investment stance leading to relatively restrained transaction and trading activity.” 

The bank’s operating income fell 3.9% to SFr863.1m ($877.7m) in the six months to June 30, while net profits grew 19% to SFr175.5m.

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