SINGAPORE - HSBC Singapore is set to get a new chief executive officer this year, with Mr Wong Kee Joo taking over the reins at the bank on June 1.
Until then, HSBC Singapore's chief operating officer, Mr Olfert De Wit, will act as the interim CEO, according to an internal memo seen by The Straits Times.
Mr Wong, whose most recent appointment was as HSBC's Asia-Pacific head for global liquidity and cash management, is replacing Mr Tony Cripps, who is leaving HSBC Singapore to become managing director and board member at Saudi British Bank (SABB) from April 4. HSBC is the largest shareholder in SABB, with a 31 per cent stake.
Last Friday, The Business Times had reported that HSBC would soon announce a new Singapore chief executive following announcements of Mr Cripps' departure. Mr Cripps held the role for four years, and oversaw the bank's most recent three-year strategic plan.
"Kee Joo is Singaporean and will bring rich and diverse experience to the role," said Mr Peter Wong, the deputy chairman and chief executive of the bank in the memo. "In addition to Singapore, he has worked in key markets in a variety of roles, including the United Kingdom, Thailand, Hong Kong and mainland China."
He went on to say that the CEO-designate's most recent role has given him strong experience in developing digital solutions for wholesale clients and supporting trade and investment flows between China and Asean, which, he added, has become the world's most important commercial corridor.
"This experience means Kee Joo is perfectly suited to help clients capture the rising commercial, wealth and digital opportunities that Singapore and the region presents," he said.
Mr Peter Wong also said that Singapore is central to the bank's "ambitious growth plans in the region".
"We will be increasing our investment in both people and technology as we continue to strengthen our wholesale banking services, particularly for multinational corporations headquartered in the country, and to grasp the growing wealth management opportunities in South-east Asia and beyond."