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UBS offloads wealth management business in Australia

Switzerland-based financial services company UBS is divesting Australian wealth management unit to a new entity being founded by its senior executives.


The bank said its decision to divest its wealth management services in the country was taken following a review.

UBS Australia wealth management head Mike Chisholm has established Crestone Wealth Management in association with a few other top executives of the unit.

Expected to be operational by October, Crestone plans to use UBS’ economic and equities research to expand its business.

Crestone will offer a range of products and an information technology platform that will provide clients with real-time data and portfolio reporting. It is in discussions with a few domestic banks to enhance its product portfolio.

Chisholm was quoted by Financial Standard as saying: "Our objective is to create Australia’s first independent global wealth manager – combining an in-depth knowledge of local equities with access to the best range of global products including international direct equities, international OTC fixed income, multicurrency accounts, foreign exchange and international margin lending.

"We will also be looking at opportunities to continually grow our product offering to suit our clients’ investment objectives."

The bank has given its advisers two days to decide if they want to be a part of the new company.

UBS global vice-chairman of wealth management Alain Robert said in a statement that the wealth-management industry was going through a lot of changes due to increased regulatory and client requirements, making operaitons in the country difficult.

However, the bank stated it would continue to invest in Australia’s investment banking and asset management businesses.

Image: UBS said it will continue investing in Australia’s investment banking and asset management businesses. Photo: courtesy of OettingerCroat.