La Trobe Financial, one of Australia’s largest privately held credit specialist Fund Managers was recently one of only 14 companies chosen by the Australian Government to help explain the benefits of the China Free Trade Agreement.
With an office established in China in 2008, La Trobe Financial is again looking forward to growing its business in North Asia following recent trade agreements signed in the region with the Australian Government. “It’s really a magic trifecta of Trade Agreements”, said CEO Greg O’Neill, “the Japan, South Korea and now China agreements have been signed all giving our country unprecedented opportunity. The agreement with China alone, as the world’s second largest economy is a tremendous result for our future and the future of many Australians. The ASIA Pacific region is very dynamic as evidenced by Japan signing up to the ASIA Fund Passport initiative of APEC giving a new impetus to financial services across our region; the ASIA Funds Passport now includes Australia, Philippines, Japan, Thailand, New Zealand, Singapore and Korea. China has also separately opened up its Funds Management industry to operators registered in Hong Kong granting mainland access to retail investors.”
La Trobe Financial, whilst formed in 1952 and employing 150 staff across 3 principal offices Melbourne, Sydney and Shanghai, sees its future as inexorably tied to the regional outlook. Vice President & Chief Wealth Management Officer, Martin Barry said in Sydney yesterday that, “Asian investors constitute approximately 5% of our business by value and following the China Free Trade Agreement we expect that to grow further; our largest investment mandate today from the Asian region is $400 million”.
La Trobe Financial has entered into a significant Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a large Chinese securities house to ensure that it is well positioned to capitalise on the new arrangements.
“Our existing registered entity in the China Free Trade Zone in Shanghai will be a prime beneficiary of the trade liberalisation deals struck by our Government and this is a most important time for all Australian businesses to be outward looking and engaging with our northern neighbours who share our time zone”, said Barry.
Over the past seven years La Trobe Financial has been building its business presence in China and also conducting a highly regarded China Scholarship Program specifically designed for Chinese banking and financial services professionals. This Program now has graduated over 56 alumni based throughout China who cooperate with La Trobe Financial on a monthly basis. The group has also incorporated a registered entity in the Shanghai Free Trade Zone dealing with the growing Chinese wealth management industry; “the key here is to remain in contact directly and be of value for them and their businesses” said Barry.
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