Dozens of advisers go as Macquarie merges its private bank and wealth divisions

Torsten Blackwood/AFP/Getty Images

Macquarie is increasing its focus on rich clients.

The bank is merging its private wealth and private banking operations, to “concentrate its growth strategy on high net-worth clients”.

The target client base is people with $1.3 million in wealth, a segment currently the focus of the Macquarie private bank. That group has grown by 80,000 people in the past seven years.

Dozens of advisers will lose their jobs as a result. There are varying reports of the numbers affected, with one report saying 34 advisers would leave, although two industry sources told Business Insider at least 50 people were going.

A Macquarie spokesperson would not comment on the number of people affected but noted the “vast majority” of staff would be retained. The group’s private banking arm employs around 300 advisers.

The relationships between wealth management divisions and other operations of major banks are one of the areas of focus for the Hayne Royal Commission into banking.

In a statement, Macquarie’s Head of Wealth Management, Bill Marynissen, said:

We are striving to create a comprehensive and tailored wealth and banking offering for our clients that can take them from the wealth accumulation stage of their lives, through to retirement. Concentrating on one client segment enables us to better deliver on this commitment.

Focusing on attracting high net-worth clients is a logical evolution of our private client business and we believe it is a space in which we can be a market leader. We have carefully assessed growth opportunities in the high net-worth segment against the strong fundamentals of our business. These include a deep understanding of the high net-worth segment, our wealth and banking expertise and suite of solutions, and the capacity to build on our existing digital capabilities.

Macquarie said the change did not affect its strategy to continue to grow its retail banking activities in home lending, deposit and credit card solutions for consumers.

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