Nedbank Private Wealth

An independent review by our team of experts.

Review summary

Nedbank Private Wealth

Nedbank Group Limited is a bank holding company, with its principal banking subsidiary being Nedbank Limited.

The company's ordinary shares have been listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange since 1969.  

Just over 55% of the stock is owned by Old Mutual. 

Nedbank Group is South Africa's fourth largest banking group measured by assets, with a strong deposit franchise, the second largest retail deposit base, a client-centric wholesale and retail franchise, and a substantial and growing bancassurance and wealth management offering.

The group offers a wide range of wholesale and retail banking services through five main business clusters, namely:

  • Nedbank Capital,
  • Nedbank Corporate,
  • Nedbank Business Banking,
  • Nedbank Retail and
  • Nedbank Wealth (the cluster in which Nedbank Private Wealth resides).
Overview

Nedbank Group focuses on southern Africa, with the group positioned as a bank for all - from both a retail and a wholesale banking perspective.

The principal banking services offered by Nedbank Group comprise business, corporate and retail banking, property finance, investment banking, private banking, foreign exchange and securities trading.

Nedbank Group also generates income from private equity, credit card issuing and processing services, custodial services, unit trust administration, asset management services and bancassurance. 

This is the division perhaps of most interest to expatraites.

Offshore banking services, such as those offered via Nedbank Private Wealth, can benefit expats because no matter where an expat lives or works, their money can be safe offshore in a well-regulated jurisdiction.

Equally, expats’ wealth can be kept in a tax efficient environment so that, as a non-resident in their home country, they are not unfairly taxed.

Multi-currency services are normally available from offshore accounts, including for debit or credit cards.

Private banking offshore is surprisingly accessible for expats, with many benefits available over and above standard current accounts available in home or onshore jurisdictions.

Nedbank Private Wealth is a private bank headquartered in the Isle of Man.  It offers an open architecture banking and investment platform for international investors - which they call their Focus Account.

Nedbank Private Wealth is the offshore banking subsidiary of the South Africa based Nedbank Group.

As Nedbank Group is largely owned by Old Mutual, the Fortune 500 financial services giant, and the Isle of Man has a Aaa rating, this offers a high degree of banking security for expats choosing the Focus Account.

International private banking services in up to 15 different currencies are integrated into the Focus platform. 

Direct Equity, Funds and ETFs are all available within it as well, and a range of in-house solutions such as multi-asset funds or segregated discretionary portfolios.  

Borrowing can be negotiated against invested assets and property through the platform – including for UK properties. 

Pensions, ISAs (in its London Branch), SIPPS, trusts and tax wrappers such as offshore bonds can all be consolidated into a single point of access.

Banking services: 

  • Current account
  • Platinum Visa card
  • Accumulation account (Isle of Man and Jersey office account holders only)
  • Fixed term deposit
  • Structured deposit
  • Lending
  • Foreign Exchange

Investment services:

  • Investment management
  • Investment dealing
  • Custody and nominee service
  • Pensions

Nedbank Private Wealth has won a large number of awards because of its high levels of service and its traditional values, some of which are explained in this short film.

DIY, intermediated, and discretionary options are all available.

It is not, however, suitable for clients with a smaller amount of wealth to manage or invest due to transfer, dealing and custody charges associated with individual service.

The pros

  • Integrated banking and investment services
  • High level of personal service
  • Size
  • Multi-award winning

The cons

  • Not so good for smaller clients
  • Part of a group that frequently changes name/shape
FAQs
What can I borrow against with Nedbank?

Subject to status, lending can be secured against a range of assets, including investment holdings and property.

This approach brings significant additional flexibility to the management of a private banking and/or investment portfolio. 

Apart from the Focus Account, what other services does Nedbank offer expats?

Nedbank offers a full suite of expat financial services, including a full fiduciary offering.

The bank helps clients manage the complexity of providing individual tailored solutions to efficiently manage family and business wealth assets.

The gateways to their international trust and company services, for individuals and corporates, are through Nedbank's trust businesses in Jersey and Guernsey, both of which are leading international financial centres, with worldwide recognition as respected and highly regulated jurisdictions.

Features and benefits:

  • Nedbank offers the security of being part of a large multinational financial services group.

  • They work closely with you and your advisers in setting up and administering bespoke, efficient structures to suit your individual requirements.

  • They maintain high levels of confidentiality, information security and professionalism, while always providing a personal service.

  • They can establish and administer offshore structures involving multiple jurisdictions from their offices in both Jersey and Guernsey.

Utilise appropriate structures for:

  • Wealth preservation - consolidation of family wealth in an overarching structure provides simplification and safeguards the interests of minors or vulnerable members of the family, and affords protection against loss of assets through unsuitable marriage or other relationships.

  • Succession planning - facilitation of the smooth transfer of wealth to family members, either during your lifetime or after your death, with the ability to avoid forced heirship provisions.

  • Security and confidentiality - for political, economic and social reasons, holding your assets in a well-regulated and stable jurisdiction can provide peace of mind.

  • Tax efficiency - structuring assets efficiently can legally mitigate taxation in appropriate circumstances.

  • Immigration/emigration - prior to arrival in a new country or return to your own country of origin, planning may be undertaken to protect assets which are outside the country of destination.

  • Incentivising employees - employers are increasingly using incentive arrangements such as equity-linked, retirement and savings-related products to attract and retain staff.

    Many of these plans are fairly complex and can involve several different jurisdictions. It is often sensible to organise such plans through tax-neutral financial centres such as Jersey and Guernsey.

Services Nedbank offers:

  • Company formation and administration
  • Private trust formation and administration
  • Foundation formation and administration
  • Formation and administration of employee benefit trusts and employee incentive arrangements
  • Formation and administration of international corporate pension and savings related arrangements
  • QNUPS
Customer reviews
Exceeded my expectations

Having never worked with a private bank before, I wasn't sure I was eligible for an account with Nedbank...but after speaking to them I was quickly assured I was eligible, and indee3d, that they'd be able to exceed my expectations.

I use my account for the management of ALL my money needs - banking, credit, lending and investing.

Have to say, I'm surprised when more people haven't heard of banking like this - I'm a bit of an evangelist now - converting colleagues and friends to Nedbank and integrated banking!

Expert verdict
Expert Assessment of Nedbank Private Wealth

In our view, the transparency, security and flexibility offered by the Nedbank Focus platform affords expats and investors an excellent platform on which to build and manage wealth. 

The availability of funds is impressive, including ETFs, which sits well with our own strategy of passive or evidence-based investing.

This platform comes highly recommended by AES International whether you are a financial planning and investment client of ours or not.

“Thank you AES International for helping me and my family with your low cost no-nonsense approach. It is refreshing!”

Kristian Petersson

“With this sort of service you also expect to be paying very high fees, but it’s just not the case. I would definitely recommend AES.”

Jake van den Dries

“In the short time that I’ve been using AES I’ve made nearly ten thousand pounds and couldn’t be happier!”

Jackie Pym

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