HSBC shuffles managers to focus on Asia

HSBC reshuffled a number of senior managers over the weekend with new group chief executive Stuart Gulliver pointing to an increased focus on emerging markets when he takes over.

Gulliver, who becomes boss of HSBC in January, said: “With the massive wealth creation we see in emerging markets today, the logic for HSBC to build a world-class global wealth business for our customers is absolutely compelling.”

“After the financial crisis... configuring HSBC to realise its full potential in retail banking was always going to be my first priority,” he added.

He announced that Paul Thurston, the current head of the bank’s UK retail business, will become chief executive of global retail banking and wealth management from 1 March 2011.

Thurston will move from London to Hong Kong, following Gulliver, who is also moving there himself in recognition of the growing importance of the Asian market.
He will have responsibility for directing the bank’s retail banking business globally and lead the development of HSBC’s retail wealth management business.

Brian Robertson, currently group chief risk officer, will replace Thurston as head of UK retail operations at the bank on 3 December.

Joe Garner will be appointed deputy chief executive under Robertson and will head up the personal financial services and commercial banking businesses in the UK.

Replacing Robertson as group chief risk officer will be Marc Moses, who will also be appointed as group managing director and sit on the board for risk and compliance issues.

A recent survey by Merrill Lynch and Capgemini showed that the combined wealth of Asian millionaires has overtaken that of Europeans.