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HSBC ramps up Singapore insurance business in bid to capture more of Asia's wealth

HSBC is ramping up its Singapore insurance business with new products and expanded distribution as it seeks to capture more of Asia's wealth from the Republic. 

On Wednesday, the London-headquartered bank rebranded its Singapore insurance business to HSBC Life Singapore, and launched two new whole-life plans for its retail and high net worth segments. 

It is also expanding its distribution channels by partnering independent financial advisory firms that serve a broad spectrum of retail to emerging affluent customers. Currently, HSBC Life Singapore’s distribution model includes a bancassurance arrangement with HSBC Bank and third-party distribution arrangements with other financial institutions.

“Our new brand is symbolic of how we are committed to grow our Singapore business. In the past year, we have revamped core elements of our business, increased investments in capabilities and made some key senior appointments that will get us ready for the new phase of growth," said Carlos Vazquez, chief executive at HSBC Life Singapore.

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The revamp comes as HSBC looks to grow wealth revenues in Asia by at least US$1 billion by 2020.

Almost half of this revenue growth - some US$400 million - will come from the global insurance business with HSBC Life Singapore playing a key contributing role, HSBC said in its statement on Wednesday. 

According to Boston Consulting Group’s 2018 Global Wealth Report, the number of affluent individuals in Asia is expected to swell from eight million in 2017 to almost 18 million by 2022. Singapore is also one of the top three offshore booking centres globally, managing US$1.1 trillion of personal wealth.