Neuberger Berman makes key hire for Asia Pacific PE push

Kent Chen hired to spearhead asset manager's Asia Pacific private equity business

Neuberger Berman, the New York asset management firm, has appointed former senior central banker Kent Chen as managing director to lead the firm's Asia Pacific private equity business from Hong Kong, according to a statement from the firm.


Chen, a former advisor to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), will advise Neuberger Berman's Hong Kong and regional area clients in the newly created position in the firm's Hong Kong office. He joins Neuberger Berman after 17 years of central banking experience at the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), where he served as deputy chief representative for its New York office and as advisor to the IMF's executive director for China in Washington D.C., among other roles.


“With his extensive experience in global private equity, Kent is an excellent addition to the Neuberger Berman private equity business,” said Anthony Tutrone, global head of alternatives at Neuberger Berman, in a statement. “We believe Kent's appointment will enable us to deepen our presence in the Asia Pacific region and broaden the scope of our private equity capabilities globally,” he said.


Chen is hardly new to the private equity business. In 2008, he assisted with creating HKMA's private equity program encompassing global buyouts, Asia-focused private equity and global energy investing.


Prior to joining the HKMA in 1998, Chen honed his finance skills at the Hong Kong office of Daiwa Securities where he was head of China research and covered the country's equities markets. His research coverage focused on infrastructure, energy and power equipment stocks.


Mr. Chen has been awarded the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and earned a Master of Public Administration from Columbia University, Master of Business Administration from University of Hull and Bachelor of Science in Economics from University of London.


Nick Hoar, head of Asia Pacific at Neuberger Berman, said Chen's more than two decades of central banking and finance experience will be “invaluable as we strengthen our services, solutions and support to our clients in the Asia Pacific region who are increasing exposure to alternative asset classes, especially private equity.”