British banking major HSBC is strengthening its brokerage business, which finances hedge funds and family offices, in a bid to bolster its wealth division in Asia, reported Bloomberg.

The bank is seeking to take advantage of its prime broking unit to allow its western clients to invest in Asia as some of its rivals pull out from such operations, unidentified people privy to the developments told the news agency.

According to sources, HSBC is planning to increase the employee headcount at the prime broking unit and ramp up its investment in technology to compete with more established players.

A source divulged that the bank is set to open an arranged financing service in New York in the coming months to help its US customers invest in emerging markets, particularly, in Asia.  

The move is said to be part of the bank’s strategic ambition to emerge as one of the leading players in the wealth management space.

The expanded brokerage unit is expected to offer enhanced service to the bank’s wealth unit and cater to its affluent customers who owns their own family offices.

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By GlobalData

A spokesperson for HSBC did not comment on the news.

In November last year, Bloomberg reported that HSBC hired two tech-focused senior investment bankers from rival UBS to grow its Asia technology sector investment banking coverage.

The appointments were of Ajinkya Mukhopadhyay as head of technology, media and telecom for Southeast Asia and India, and Andrew An as managing director responsible for TMT in China.

In 2020, a senior HSBC executive told Reuters the bank is expecting to register double-digit asset growth in its wealth business in Asia Pacific by 2023.