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UOB sharpens focus on supporting the growth of financial institutions in Asia
United Overseas Bank (UOB) is sharpening its focus on supporting the growth of financial institutions expanding and investing in Asia.
In the first six months of 2015, UOB’s Financial Institutions Group (FIG) revenue rose more than 40 per cent year-on-year as the Bank tapped on its Asian expertise and network to help its FIG clients meet their funding, trade financing, cash management, hedging and capital market needs across the region.
These clients comprise banks and non-bank financial institutions (FIs) such as insurance companies, global funds, sovereign wealth funds and pension funds.
Ms Lim Lay Wah, Global Head of Financial Institutions Group, UOB, said that the Bank’s partnership with FIG clients meant that they could play a bigger role in Asia’s economic development.
“The growth of financial institutions is fuelled by rising intra-regional trade, increased demand for infrastructure and growing wealth management needs of the region’s expanding middle class population. UOB’s deep knowledge of Asia and our integrated network have been harnessed to connect our FIG clients to regional opportunities,” Ms Lim said.
One example of UOB’s collaboration is with a state-run Indonesian bank – Indonesia Eximbank (IEB). UOB was one of the mandated lead arrangers, underwriters and bookrunners (MLABs) on a US$1 billion syndicated loan. The loan was used by IEB to provide financing to support Indonesia’s cross-border trade. Today, UOB also provides IEB with advisory on liquidity management, treasury and alternative fundraising solutions in the capital markets.
Mr Basuki Setyadjid, Managing Director, IEB, said, “We are pleased to work with UOB in our recent successful syndicated loan deal. The deal met our funding expectations at the right target price and also helped to diversify our funding sources. This is the second time that we have appointed UOB as one of our MLABs as we are confident of their commitment and professionalism.”
Helping non-bank financial institutions tap Asia’s investment opportunities
In addition to helping banks, UOB is facilitating the investment needs of non-bank FIs that are looking to grow their assets in Asia to tap the region’s growth opportunities. For instance, pension funds are expected to invest US$6.5 trillion in assets across Asia Pacific in 2020, double the amount in 2012.
Ms Lim said, “We are seeing more global institutional investors directing their funds to Asia. As a bank with an extensive network across Asia, UOB is able to connect clients to the opportunities that the region offers and help them source for and finance quality assets.”
One such client is Phoenix Property Investors, a private equity real estate firm that focuses on investment opportunities in Asia. Besides helping the client to manage its market risks and liquidity, UOB’s ongoing mandate is also to provide the financial solutions and advisory needed on ac uisition financing and capital market fundraising.
Mr Samuel W. Chu, Managing Partner and Chief Investment Officer, Phoenix Property Investors, said, “UOB’s specialised client coverage bankers across the region have in-depth local market insights and strong understanding of our business requirements. They consistently surpass our expectations with their professionalism and foresight. As such, they are able to provide us with customised solutions to help us capture market opportunities in Asia at the right time to meet our investment needs.”
11 October 2015