Chase, the US consumer and commercial banking business of JPMorgan Chase, has appointed Barry Sommers to the newly created role of CEO of retail affluent and investment services, as a part of its initiative to expand its relationships with existing affluent customers and attract new customers.

Mr Sommers moves over from CEO of JP Morgan Securities, formerly known as Bear Stearns Private Client Services. He also served in senior asset management roles at Bear Stearns and was in asset management sales to high-net-worth individuals and institutions at Goldman Sachs.

According to Chase, while 8% of its retail customers are affluent, their deposits and investments – held at Chase and elsewhere – represent two-thirds of all customers’ deposits and investments. Chase’s strategy is to earn more than its current 5% share of those assets.

Charlie Scharf, head of retail financial services at Chase, said: “We have made this initiative a strategic priority at JPMorgan Chase because we can do far more for the affluent clients who already like doing business with Chase through our extensive branch and ATM networks. We will leverage the investment expertise of JP Morgan, develop our products, sharpen our marketing and improve our service model to meet the unique needs of affluent customers.

“I am confident that our initiative will help us serve customers better and could increase pretax profits by $500m to $1bn annually. Barry is a proven leader with excellent experience.”