StanChart CEO Winters Points to U.S. and European Expansion
(Bloomberg) -- Standard Chartered Plc Chief Executive Officer Bill Winters wants the emerging markets-focused bank to do something counterintuitive: expand in the West.
Speaking at a Morgan Stanley conference this week, the former JPMorgan & Chase Co. executive said that Standard Chartered would increase its market share among U.S. and European companies.
“Where we don’t have a strong market share to begin with, is with corporations that are based in Europe and the Americas,” said Winters. “They need our network as much as any multinational corporations on the planet.”
A little over 10% of the bank’s operating revenue came from Europe and the Americas last year, less than a quarter of its haul from its from its Chinese and North Asian business. Despite being headquartered in London, Standard Chartered has little business in the U.K., however, the comments from Winters suggest this could change.
Standard Chartered’s push to build up its roster of Western corporate clients comes as its larger rival HSBC Holdings Plc seeks to execute its own “Pivot to Asia” that is already seeing its business shrink in the West, including in major economies such as France and Germany.
“Where we are coming from, we are coming a bit behind,” Winters said. “Ten years from now we will have an exceptionally strong global network. It will probably connect more nodes than today, in the sense we will continue to penetrate these client bases in Europe and the Americas, together with what we have got in Asia, the Middle East and Africa.”
Winters also had strong words about the asset-management industry, which he said were “always selling their own crap first.”
The bank has a competitive advantage because it doesn’t have to push its own funds, he said. “We’re open architecture. We don’t sell anybody’s crap, we only sell stuff that we believe in. Doesn’t mean we are always right, by the way.”
Standard Chartered is a relative minnow in the investment management industry. The bank managed $240 billion of client assets at the end of last year and said its private bank attracted net new money inflows of $700 million in 2020, its fourth consecutive year of positive flows. However, its operation is tiny compared to the likes of those run by Credit Suisse AG and UBS AG, which dominate the global wealth management business.
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