Sunday, 27 September 2009

Barclays To Launch Funds Unit In Russia

Wall Street Journal Europe

September 20, 2009

By Jason Corcoran

Barclays is planning to launch an asset management business in Russia, building on its retail and investment banking activities in the country.

The bank will launch an asset management group focused on wealthy onshore clients and, potentially, the pension scheme and corporate sectors. Bob Foresman, who last week joined Barclays Capital as local chief executive and country head from Renaissance Capital, will lead the venture. Foresman’s appointment at BarCap was first revealed by Financial News on Friday.

Hans-Joerg Rudloff, chairman of Barclays in Russia, said the recruitment of Foresman demonstrated the bank’s commitment to the country.

Rudloff said: “These are good long-term investments – buying a bank, rebranding and getting into asset management onshore. When you hire lots of very high-profile people in a short period of time, it shows you are committed to the country. We also confirmed our intentions when Barclays bought Russian bank Expobank last year for a high price.”

Barclays’ retail bank acquired Russian lender Expobank last year for $745m. It has since rebranded and revamped Expobank’s 36 branches in western Russia. BarCap employs nearly 30 bankers in Russia, plus 70 Russian-dedicated bankers in London.

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