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Why this Swiss private bank is bullish six months after UK launch

Why this Swiss private bank is bullish six months after UK launch

The hunt is on to hire several senior bankers to help grow and deepen Mirabaud’s UK client base, six months after it launched its UK branch.

The bank hopes to take on between two and four relationship managers ‘that can bring their own relationships with them’ over the next year, said Harry Thorburn, head of Mirabaud’s UK private client wealth management business.

‘We have a great platform and are fully integrated with what is happening elsewhere in the group and well positioned to grow the business. We are looking for senior people with good client relationships that can help us grow steadily.’

Despite Brexit, the UK is a natural fit for Mirabaud’s private banking business, the company said, pointing to the opening of its first local office earlier this year as a tangible demonstration of faith.

‘We are a Swiss bank and we like the UK, which is why we are here and why we have decided to invest in doing business here. Mirabaud has a well-trodden strategy of opening bank branches; before this one it had opened similar branches in France and Spain, and money from UK clients has certainly been coming in,’ Thorburn added.

Mirabaud does not release regional breakdowns of assets under management (AUM). Overall client assets have grown from CHF29.1 billion to CHF31 billion (£23.6 billion) in the year to date, however.

‘We are targeting any client with a UK nexus and our typical client [has] a minimum of £3 million to £5 million. For these clients, we are offering discretionary asset management, execution only, custody and advisory services.’

The majority of Mirabaud’s UK private client assets, some 80%, are managed on a discretionary basis, with most of these clients falling into ultra-high net worth – $50 million and above in assets.

‘Private clients in the UK today appreciate service, and the culture at Mirabaud is very much focused on that. This is because we have really short lines of communication. Another benefit of the bespoke service
that we offer is that clients don’t have to work to fit us.’

Most of the clients of the local office are based in the UK. Clients can be booked in the UK, Dubai, Luxembourg or Geneva.

‘With our different booking centres we can look after clients with diverse tax needs,’ said Etienne D’Arenberg, head of UK market, Mirabaud & Cie.

‘The UK is a melting pot and this is reflected in the types of clients we have – non-domiciled non-resident, non-domiciled resident and resident domiciled clients – all of whom have a UK nexus.’

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