Beverly Chandler, Opalesque London:
News came this month that the Maples Group is expanding its presence in the Asia Pacific region with the launch of the full service administration offering of MaplesFS in Singapore.
The new fund services office is headed up by Eastern Fong, regional head of fund services – Asia, while the new Maples Fiduciary in Singapore will be under the leadership of Hugh Thompson, Global Co-Head of Fiduciary.
Fong explained that Maples arrived in Asia with the opening of an office in Hong Kong in 2006, which has grown from zero to staff numbers of 45 and had been looking to expand further in Asia. "Hong Kong is a different market from Singapore" he explained in an interview with Opalesque. "In Hong Kong you see a flow of mainland Chinese-based institutions and hedge fund firms, but you also have private equity business from South East Asia, family offices and wealth managers who typically have Singapore as their preferred jurisdiction."
Maples sent in Kate Colchester, business development expert in the region, who found that the firm should be in Singapore as well. Singapore famously loves the UCITS structure but it’s not the primary focus of the new office, given that the firm has offices in Dublin and Luxembourg to deal with UCITS products. "In Singapore the main drive is not UCITS but family offices, private equity, private wealth ......................
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