UK banking giant HSBC has stepped up plans to develop its prime brokerage business in Asia with several key hires joining the firm. Last week, ex-Merrill Lynch PB veteran, Melvyn Ford, joined to head up hedge-fund coverage in Asia to strengthen the bank’s existing relationships with hedge funds (custodial, private banking). Unfortunately Ford was unavailable to comment on his newly created role. Additionally, two more hires have been confirmed this week in the form of Matt Kiraly and Lauren Degney, both from Citi. A clear sign that momentum is building as HSBC attempts to compete in the PB space across APAC.