Twiddling your thumbs in London, and wondering when markets might come back? You could always go north, or a very, very long way east.
According to reliable sources in Asia, JPMorgan is on the verge of massively expanding its presence in the Philippines, and intends to increase the number of people working in its back-office operations there from 3,000 to 10,000 in the next few years.
Closer to home, Deutsche Bank opened a 69,000 square foot ‘operational processing centre‘ in Birmingham in the summer. It currently employs 300 people there and may employ up to another 500 in the coming few years.
JPMorgan’s Philippine ambitions are unconfirmed by the bank, but Jamie Dimon recently told local media that the US bank might increase staff in India and the Philippines because those countries serve as “major international hubs for outsourcing of support functions”.
Deutsche declined to comment on its Birmingham office. Recruiters say the German bank is transferring a handful of senior staff from London to oversee the new operation, but the emphasis is on recruiting locally: “There’s no point moving a load of people from London – it’s all about hiring cheap graduates in Birmingham,” says one.
Richard Mills, a headhunter with Chalre Associates in the Philippines, says there’s demand for Western managers with experience of business processing outsourcing to work in Manila. The money’s not good, but not awful, either. Chalre says most expat managers working for banks in the country earn between US$90k and $150k.