ANZ has recruited a senior Hong Kong banker – and former airline industry executive – as it starts to hire again in Asian institutional banking.
Felix Nie has joined ANZ’s debt capital markets (DCM) team at director level. He was previously at Standard Chartered in Hong Kong, where he spent two years as a director in China corporate sales, according to his online public profile.
After several years of general expansion in Asia under former CEO Mike Smith, ANZ last year sold its Asian retail and wealth operations to DBS, closed its ‘emerging corporate’ business in the region, and cut jobs in Singapore and Hong Kong.
The bank is now focusing on its more profitable Asian institutional unit. In February, head of institutional Mark Whelan said key markets for ANZ in Asia include DCM, syndicated lending and trade finance.
The hiring of Nie suggests that ANZ is now starting to expand its DCM team. It also comes as Asia Pacific (ex-Japan) international DCM volume reached $270.8bn in the first half of 2017, up 44% year-on-year, and the highest first-half volume on record.
Chinese and bulge bracket banks dominate DCM in Asia, but ANZ wants to carve out its own niche but giving Asian clients better access to Australia markets, and vice versa.
While Nie has a degree in corporate finance from the Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, he has reached director rank in banking despite spending the first 10 years of his career working for airlines.
He was in the finance department at China Eastern Airlines in Shanghai between 1998 and 2004, latterly as a manager, before he moved to Hong Kong for a 19-month stint as a management trainee at Cathay Pacific.
China Eastern then poached him back and he spent three years working in sales in its Hong Kong office, according to his online profile.
Nie moved into the banking sector in 2008 when he joined the global markets division of HSBC. He stayed there until 2015, most recently an associate director in corporate sales.
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