Barclays bumps up stake in Australia's Barrenjoey Capital

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FILE PHOTO: A branch of Barclays Bank is seen, in London

(Reuters) - Britain's Barclays Plc said on Wednesday it had nearly doubled its stake in Barrenjoey Capital Partners to help expand the Australia-based investment banking boutique's business.

The move comes as investment banking boutiques in Australia seek to move away from restrictive bureaucracy and shrinking bonuses at bigger banks, by tapping clients who value niche expertise.

Barclays, Britain's third-biggest bank by market value, increased its shareholding to 18.2% from 9.9% by subscribing A$75 million ($52.72 million) in new capital in Barrenjoey, which was formed by former UBS bankers and funded by Barclays and Magellan.

Australia is an important part of its strategic growth plans in the Asia Pacific region, Barclays said in a statement.

The additional capital will be instrumental to support growth in Barrenjoey's markets business, which includes establishment of fixed income derivatives and equity financing platforms, in the next half of the year, Barclays added.

($1 = 1.4227 Australian dollars)

(Reporting by Navya Mittal in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)