BSI Asia chief executive Brunner to retire

CEO Hanspeter Brunner's duties will be handed over to BSI's head of private banking Asia, Mr Raj Sriram.
CEO Hanspeter Brunner's duties will be handed over to BSI's head of private banking Asia, Mr Raj Sriram.

ZURICH • Mr Hanspeter Brunner, the head of Asian operations for Swiss bank BSI, has decided to retire, the bank said. The company did not give a more specific reason for the departure.

"After having spent more than 45 years in the financial industry, Mr Hanspeter Brunner, CEO BSI Asia, decided to retire and is leaving BSI accordingly," a BSI spokesman said in a statement on Tuesday.

BSI, which was recently sold by Brazil's Grupo BTG Pactual to EFG International, said Mr Brunner's responsibilities will be handed over to its Asian head of private banking.

"The responsibility for BSI Singapore will be handed over to Mr Raj Sriram, who joined BSI in 2009 and is currently head of private banking Asia," said the bank.

Mr Brunner, 64, who is a BSI board member based in Singapore, will work with Mr Sriram on the transition in the coming weeks, the BSI spokesman said.

News of Mr Brunner's departure was first reported by Swiss finance website Inside Paradeplatz.

BSI, which is based in the Italian-speaking region of Switzerland, relied on Mr Brunner to aid its expansion in Asia, after he joined the bank from the Singapore office of RBS Coutts in 2009, reported The Wall Street Journal.

In early 2010, BSI said Mr Brunner's appointment was an important part of its increasing presence in Asia. The following year, BSI said its employees in Asia had increased to 280 from 50 over the course of 11/2 years.

EFG announced a deal to buy BSI earlier this year, a purchase it hopes will catapult the bank into Switzerland's top five money managers for the wealthy, Reuters reported.

Zurich-based EFG will pay 975 million Swiss francs (S$1.4 billion) in cash, with BTG Pactual also getting a roughly 20 per cent stake in EFG. This could rise to 30 per cent if the share sale gets bogged down in tough markets.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 10, 2016, with the headline 'BSI Asia chief executive Brunner to retire'. Print Edition | Subscribe