BNP Paribas Securities Services has been selected to provide custody services to BEA Union Investment, the first fund manager to use Hong Kong’s Open-ended Fund Company (OFC) regime for an actively-managed retail fund.
Introduced by the Securities and Futures Commission in July 2018, the OFC regime enables Hong Kong-domiciled investment funds to be established in the form of a company, which offers investors more flexibility than unit trust structures.
As part of this mandate, BNP Paribas Securities Services will provide BEA Union Investment with a range of custody services including fiduciary duties, fund administration as well as transfer agency services.
Asia continues to be a growth area for the custodian bank, with revenues increasing 18% year-on-year in the region during 2019. The organisation set up its Asia-Pacific presence in 2009 and now operates in Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore, with a substantial team throughout the region.
“We are proud to be among the first to launch a fund through the new domestic OFC structure,” said Eleanor Wan, chief executive officer of BEA Union Investment Management.
“We are glad to have BNP Paribas Securities Services as our partner in this important milestone, boosting Hong Kong’s status as an international asset management centre. The BU APAC Bond Fund, our pilot fund, will offer investors our flagship investment competence in Asian fixed income.”
In 2017, BNP Paribas named Julien Kasparian as its new head of securities services for Hong Kong, to lead its securities services team, with a focus on deepening relationships with new and existing clients.
“We are delighted to have been appointed by BEA Union Investment as its custodian and fund administrator to support its first OFC in the Hong Kong market,” said Kasparian. “The introduction of this new regime enhances local market infrastructure, positioning Hong Kong as one of the preferred fund domiciles among all other internationally recognisable jurisdictions. This mandate demonstrates our bank’s commitment, expertise and capability to support Asia Pacific’s new corporate fund structures and to be a one-stop-shop for asset managers which are looking to grow in the region.”