Bloomberg reports that Barclays Wealth, the UK’s third biggest lender, is to quadruple its assets under management in South and Southeast Asia in a push to attract a rapidly expanding number of wealthy individuals. In a serious response to claims the amount of wealth in the Asia Pacific region (excluding Japan) will increase at twice the global rate, Barclays will invest 350 million pounds (US$517 million) in its wealth management unit and triple its number of bankers over the next five years, the majority of hires coming from Southeast Asia.

As of March 31, Barclays managed a total of 151.2 billion pounds ($230 billion) in assets globally and employed 7400 people. UBS AG and Standard Chartered Plc have also announced plans to strengthen their Asian private banking operations.

see also: UBS Wealth Management bolsters Ultra High Net Worth business in South Asia (UBS press release)