UBS taps into Japanese wealth with Sumitomo Mitsui JV

Tokyo_Kabuki-choUBS has agreed a strategic partnership with Sumitomo Mitsui Trust as the Swiss bank looks to tap into Japan’s wealth management market. UBS and the Japanese trust bank plan to offer one another’s products and services to their respective clients from the end of the year, subject to regulatory approvals. The joint venture between the pair will be 51% owned by UBS. According to the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), personal wealth in Japan grew by 8% to $16.8 trillion in 2017, with more than half of it in cash and deposits. The push is part of UBS’ efforts to tap into Japan’s household assets. “This landmark transaction with a top-level local partner will ideally complement our service and product offering to the benefit of clients," said Sergio Ermotti, chief executive at UBS Group. UBS’ country head for Japan, Zenji Nakamura, said the partnership is “a new milestone that sends a clear message of long-term commitment to the Japanese market." Sumitomo Mitsui has approximately $2.6 trillion in assets under custody while UBS has $2.4 trillion in assets under management. In a separate announcement last week, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust formed a joint venture with the UK FTSE 100 asset manager, Aberdeen Standard Investments (ASI), to invest in real estate in Japan and “mature” markets in Asia Pacific. ©2019 funds global asia

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