Standard Chartered expects Indian profits to exceed HK for the first time next year, Richard Meddings, finance director, told the Financial Times. Hard to believe as HK is its core market.
But then StanChart executives, including Peter Sands, the group’s CEO, were in Mumbai to announce that the bank had obtained regulatory approval to become the first foreign company to list on an Indian stock exchange.
So a little cynicism is in order?
Seriously, Temasek with 19% of StanChart, must be commended for investing in a bank that now has as its two major markets, HK/China and India. Makes up for that FT dominated mongrel, DBS. Time to strip DBS to a local retail bank, and rename it POSB? Who needs one Asian champ and one Asian chump?
When you think about it, Temask’s banking strategy (Asian prong: stakes in two major Chinese banks, StanChart, and in Asian banks in Indonesia, M’sia, Pakistan etc) worked. Where it went wrong badly was in its Western investment banking strategy buying into Merrill Lynch and Barclays and cutting its losses when the hedgies were buying.)
Moral of story, something Dr Goh could have warned them against: “Ang Moh tua kee” strategy does not work.