DBS Private Bank Expresses Confidence in Hong Kong NRI Desk

In the dynamic landscape of private banking, DBS Private Bank has found itself at the forefront of a shifting tide in demand for its non-resident Indian (NRI) services. Vikas Jaidka, the head of Middle East, Africa, and NRI for the bank, reports a notable uptick in interest, particularly in the Hong Kong market and within India itself.

The fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic has triggered significant demographic changes, notably in Hong Kong, where the NRI community has seen a decline. In response, a migration of private bankers from Singapore to Hong Kong has unfolded, prompting a reevaluation of NRI desks by major banks. Despite this shift, Jaidka underscores the continued importance of Hong Kong, the Greater Bay area, and the Philippines as hubs for the NRI community.

DBS Private Bank’s NRI desk in Hong Kong stands ready to cater to the needs of these clients, particularly business owners who seek comprehensive services beyond mere wealth management, including corporate banking.

Across the spectrum of clientele, there is a discernible trend towards personalized financial planning and cross-border wealth management solutions. Notably, larger families are showing a keen interest in bespoke private market investment options.

Setting itself apart, DBS leverages cutting-edge technology, including data analytics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, to better serve its ultra-high-net-worth clients. Jaidka highlights the overwhelming adoption of the bank’s digibank wealth app for portfolio management and transactions, underlining DBS’s commitment to technological innovation.

Furthermore, DBS has bolstered client engagement through curated research recommendations, resulting in a notable uptick in clients opting for legacy planning solutions.

Turning to onshore opportunities, DBS’s merger with Lakshmi Vilas Bank (LVB) in November 2020 signals its commitment to the Indian market. This strategic move expands customer access to a wider array of products and services, including the bank’s renowned digital banking offerings. Jaidka stresses that India remains a focal point, with the merger positioning DBS to meet the burgeoning demand for onshore retail, wealth, and corporate banking services.

In a fiercely competitive landscape, DBS faces off against both foreign heavyweights and local rivals, including Julius Baer, HSBC Global Private Banking, Standard Chartered Private Bank, Deutsche Bank Private Bank, and LGT.

In a bid to further solidify its presence in the Indian market, DBS recently unveiled Treasures Private Client, a tailored offering that promises bespoke wealth management solutions and lifestyle benefits for onshore clients.