Swiss private bank Julius Baer announced that it will expand its presence in South Africa with an advisory office based in Johannesburg.
The news comes after another Swiss bank, Credit Suisse, said that it was closing its Johannesburg office, as reported by International Investment. Clients of Credit Suisse would now be served by their offices in Europe and Dubai, the bank said.
Having a presence in South Africa is part of a long-term strategy to expand in the region as Switzerland’s third-largest wealth manager seeks to profit from a growing pool of high-net worth individuals in the country.
Julius Baer will employ seven at its new office, most of whom have been hired from South Africa’s three main wealth managers: RMB Private Bank, Barclays Africa (Absa) and Nedbank.
“As part of our focused growth strategy, we have identified South Africa as one of the markets we want to invest in,” Rémy Bersier, head of emerging markets at Julius Baer said in a statement.
“On the African continent, South Africa has the largest high net-worth individual population of 92,000,” Daniel Savary, head of Middle East and Africa, added.
In October, another Swiss bank, Lombard Odier, said that it was also expanding its presence in the country. The bank was awarded a category one licence from the industry regulator, the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA).
In contrast, Credit Suisse Group AG and Deutsche Bank AG announced plans to scale back in the country.