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JPMorgan opens South Korea commercial banking office in international expansion

By Elizabeth Dilts Marshall

NEW YORK, Oct 14 (Reuters) – JPMorgan Chase & Co has opened a commercial banking office in South Korea, the bank said on Thursday as its two-year international expansion has helped it gain major corporate clients.

Starting in 2019, JPMorgan sought to establish a commercial banking presence in 19 countries outside the United States and Canada.

“We’ve been successful in every country we’ve been to in identifying and landing corporate clients,” Andrew Kresse, head of the commercial bank’s corporate client banking international group, told Reuters. “Some are like hidden champions. They may not be recognizable to the lay person but they have a big presence in (their country).”

The bank’s strategy has been to hire local commercial bankers in countries where it already has a presence and to target mid-sized companies, often the subsidiaries of larger corporations that might work with the investment bank.

JPMorgan’s expansion into Europe led to its commercial bankers playing a part in the initial public offering for the French music distributor Believe SA, a green bond transaction for the Italian energy group Falck Renewables SpA and a convertible bond transaction for the Dutch biotech company Pharming Group NV.

JPMorgan has been in South Korea for more than 50 years. Its new office will have eight to 10 bankers led by Min Kim, who previously worked as divisional head of international corporates for Standard Chartered Bank Korea. (Reporting by Elizabeth Dilts Marshall; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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