Julius Baer pulls in $10bn in new money as advisor hiring spree continues

Julius Baer is planning on continuing an advisor hiring spree it embarked on earlier this year which has so far helped the Swiss private bank attract CHF 9.2bn ($10.6bn) in net new money.

The Swiss private bank reported it had hired 57 advisors – known internally as relationship managers – in the first half of this year, increasing its advisor headcount to 1,305, according to mid-year results published Monday.

Overall, the firm currently boasts 7,178 full-time employees – a 4% increase from the end of 2022 – while its assets under management also grew by 4% to CHF 441bn ($509bn).

Net new money inflows, while impacted by clients cutting back on lending still reached CHF 7.1bn ($8.2bn) in the first six months of this year, the report revealed. Discounting the client deleveraging trend, Julius Baer said net new money inflows hit CHF 9.2bn ($10.6bn), compared to CHF 2.6bn ($3bn) in the first half of 2022.

During a Q&A session with analysts, chief financial officer Evie Kostakis said 45% of net new money came from seasoned relationship managers who had spent at least three years at the firm, while the remaining 55% came from new relationship managers, who are expected to contribute between CHF 2bn ($2bn) and CHF 3bn ($3.5bn) of net new money this year.

‘In the first half of 2023, with many uncertainties affecting client and market sentiment, Julius Baer has again demonstrated its attractiveness to clients and as an employer,’ Philipp Rickenbacher, chief executive officer at Julius Baer, said in the report. ‘A complex environment has not hindered us from achieving a strong start to the current strategy cycle – on the contrary, it has even allowed for a tactical acceleration of our push for scale in our key markets.’

Rickenbacher added Julius Baer had plans to continue hiring talent for the rest of this year and next, according to reports.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Rickenbacher said the bank has been benefiting from Credit Suisse’s near collapse and its acquisition by local rival UBS, but that it has also  ’been able to generate new money from a much broader array of sources’.

A number of Julius Baer’s new advisors recruits have joined from Credit Suisse and UBS since the March rescue deal, with more advisors expected to be leaving both firms in the coming months after UBS announced sweeping job cuts in June.

Among Julius Baer’s new hires were three new private bankers that joined its Latin America desk from Credit Suisse.

The private bank has also been bolstering its business in Brazil – Julius Baer Family Office – where it recently added a team of nine people in March. Julius Baer is also aiming to increase the capacity of its Brazil office later this year, according to its mid-year report.

A spokesperson for the firm said the bank doesn’t disclose specific net new money breakdowns across different geographies.

In addition, the firm has launched an associate relationship manager programme, which began with 20 participants this year and is expected to expand to 50 in 2024.

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