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Nomura Sees Future in Asian High Net Worth Clients

Japan’s biggest securities firm has hired over 50 relationship managers from banks including Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, BNP Paribas

Ravi Raju
Singapore-based Ravi Raju, who has had a 30-year stint in financial markets, is credited with building up Deutsche's asset and wealth management franchise in Asia. Photo: Reuters.


Nomura Holdings is steadily building its global wealth management business and plans to further expand its Singapore and Hong Kong hubs, as Japan’s biggest securities firm accelerates a push into a highly competitive sector.

Just over a year after Nomura snagged Ravi Raju to spearhead its ambitions in the wealth operations, the veteran banker has led a hiring spree as part of its efforts to diversify from its home market and capture affluent Asian clients.

“All the studies done by external experts show that wealth in Asia is going to be growing at 8-10% on a yearly basis. The pie is growing and our piece of the pie is also expanding,” said Raju, the head of Nomura’s international wealth management unit.

Nomura has already hired more than 50 relationship managers from banks including Citigroup, Deutsche Bank and BNP Paribas.

They will target an Asian wealth management revenue pool that a Boston Consulting Group report in June said will soar faster than any other market worldwide, nearly doubling over the next five years to $52 billion.

In April 2020, Nomura brought its wealth management unit ex-Japan under its wholesale division – made up of its global markets and investment banking franchises.

The strategy involved offering large entrepreneurs and high net worth individuals access to Nomura’s vast array of financial products and investment banking services under one roof, while leveraging the firm’s status as the top wealth manager in Japan.

“We had a good first 12 months,” said Raju, adding that the business was also growing from Nomura’s existing bankers and clients.

“As we have expanded with more relationship managers and they are onboarding their clients, our assets under management will continue to grow.”

Singapore-based Raju, who has had a 30-year stint in financial markets, is credited with building up Deutsche’s asset and wealth management franchise in Asia.

He last spent nearly four years at UBS heading its Asia-Pacific ultra high net worth and global family office business.

Over the last 12 months, Nomura added a record total of about 600 new customers in its global wealth management unit, said Raju, 54, who joined the group in late 2020.

However, he has his work cut out as Nomura isn’t even in the top-20 ranks of private banks in Asia for 2020.

Banks such as HSBC and Standard Chartered are also focusing on Asian private banking to boost growth as they compete with Swiss giants UBS and Credit Suisse.

Nomura’s international wealth assets have risen to $13 billion currently from $8 billion in September 2020 and Raju said it is targeting to manage $25 billion to $35 billion by March 2025.


  • Reuters, with additional editing by George Russell




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George Russell

George Russell is a freelance writer and editor based in Hong Kong who has lived in Asia since 1996. His work has been published in the Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, New York Post, Variety, Forbes and the South China Morning Post.


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