Union Bancaire Privée (UBP) announced that it has acquired 100% of the shares issued by Angel Japan Asset Management.

The Tokyo-based independent adviser specialising in Japanese small-cap equities will strengthen UBP in Japan. It is also a clear sign of UBP and its intent to expand through Asia Pacific.

In addition, the deal followed a successful partnership between UBP and Angel Japan AM. The companies have been working together since 2018 when Angel Japan AM advised UBP Investments, which has outperformed its benchmark.

Following transfer of ownership, Hirotaka Usami will become chairman of a new board of directors at Angel Japan AM, which Ryota Vando, current COO, will become CEO. Also, all current employees of Angel Japan AM are expected to remain with the firm.

Nicolas Faller, Co-CEO asset management and head of institutional clients at UBP, said: “The acquisition of Angel Japan AM underscores UBP’s high conviction on the investment opportunities in the global small-cap equity segment, notably in Japan, and as to the team’s unique ability to seize them. Taking on the ownership of Angel Japan AM will not only broaden our distribution channels to onshore Japanese clients, but will also strengthen our in-house capabilities and value proposition to serve our offshore clients even better.”

Usami added: “We are pleased to have found the right partner for our clients and our skilled and dedicated employees. We are confident that the on-the-ground and in-depth insights we bring to UBP will create long-term value for our clients, and support UBP’s growth ambitions in Japan and internationally. The anticipated success of this new tie-up is built on the solidity of our partnership over the past five years.”

Founded in 2001 and led by Usami, Angel Japan AM is made up of five seasoned investment professionals and holds total assets under advisory of $1.2bn.