HSBC (HBC) is turning to a veteran banker to lead the American arm of its international business.

The $2.7-trillion asset company based in London said Thursday it has appointed Diane D'Erasmo to the newly created post of executive vice president of international commercial banking in the U.S.

D'Erasmo moves to the national post after serving since 2007 as regional head of HSBC's commercial banking in the Northeast. She has held a series of executive positions at HSBC and Republic National Bank throughout her 32 years in the banking industry, after beginning her career as a certified public account with Deloitte.

"There is a huge growth opportunity here in the U.S. that we're undertaking through organic growth," D'Erasmo said in an interview. "We want to build an inbound referral business, which is what my focus will be."

"We believe as the world becomes one there will be much more investment here, given the size of the U.S. economy," she added.

D'Erasmo, whom American Banker named recently to its list of the "25 Most Powerful Women in Banking" for the fifth consecutive year, says she expects her experience overseeing relationships with roughly 1,600 domestic businesses to help her address the banking needs of multinational firms from abroad.

"For me, it's an extremely exciting opportunity to leverage my experience in connecting clients around the world, hopefully helping our existing clients here in the U.S., and hopefully connecting clients, which we believe is key to our success in growing our book."

D'Erasmo, who will be based in New York, says she looks forward to her latest challenge. "What excites me about it most is that it's a brand new position," said D'Erasmo. "I can put my mark on it. I love building businesses."

HSBC has not said who will succeed D'Erasmo in her former role.

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