Middle East Wealth Management Forum 2019

Ritz Carlton, DIFC,UAE

We were delighted to host our annual Middle East in Asian Wealth Management event in Dubai. Over 250 CEOs, COOs, CIOs, senior management, asset managers, and advisers attended – from a mix of Private Banks, Retail banks, IFAs, Family Offices, Insurance Companies, Asset Management Firms and other Independent Wealth Management Firms.

Below for your interest and reference are links to various content we captured from the day. Please click on the orange headlines – and do send any comments or feedback to events@hubbis.com.


Content Highlights 

Video Highlights
Video Highlights Summary PDF
Exclusive Insights
I Love Wealth Management
Event summary
Panel discussions
Presentations & Workshops
Post event Supplement


Post-event Report

You might also like to view the full Post-Event Report – which is a consolidated summary, including photos of speakers & delegates, the attendee profiles & some delegate feedback, polling results, and more. 



The Middle East: A Wealth of Opportunity and Challenges Ahead

Hubbis is delighted that our delegates and speakers all enjoyed a remarkably positive and insightful day on January 22 in Dubai, when we hosted our 4th annual Middle East Wealth Management Forum.


Video Highlights

We asked leading industry experts - what are the opportunities and challenges for the year ahead?  View the combined video highlights, or click on the links to view the individual videos.

Full Video Highlights
Video Highlights Summary PDF

I love Wealth Management

Bart Kendall, Globaleye
Christian CameronDubai Financial Services Authority
Damian HitchenSwissquote
F. Edward LopezJHC Systems
Fahad VerseyUnion Insurance
James PollardPwC 
Kimberley WilksPwC
Laurence BlackAsiaciti Trust
Malik SarwarK2 Leaders 
Nick SavastanoInvesco 
Nirav Dinesh Kumar ShahFAME Advisory 
Nisarg TrivediSchroders 
Peter HuberZurich International
Philip StoryInvestors Trust
Sean KelleherMondial 
Shiraz HabibFirst Abu Dhabi Bank 
Yann MrazekM/HQ


Exclusive Insights ​​​ ​​​

We e asked leading industry experts for their exclusive and incisive insights.  Click on the links to view the individual videos.

Exclusive Insights

Bart Kendall, Globaleye
How do most firms deploy talent management for hiring, upskilling and retaining?

Christian Cameron, Dubai Financial Services Authority
What regulatory initiatives in Funds and Asset Management have we seen in UAE?

Damian HitchenSwissquote
What digital expectations do wealth management clients have today? Do you find that people are just talking about digital? Or really taking action?
Delivering investment products and advice to clients – time to re-think everything?

F. Edward Lopez JHC Systems
What’s the role of digitalization in wealth management in the GCC region?

James PollardPwC
How do you see tax developments and complexity impacting clients?
How are the local tax frameworks developing?

Kimberley WilksPwC
What are the worries for a Middle East family which has structures in place? Is it reputation risk, regulatory risk, new taxes or levies being introduced?
What are the tax developments that affect wealthy clients in GCC today?

Laurence BlackAsiaciti Trust
How do wealthy families try and engage the next generation around handling the wealth?
Do you see Middle East families trying to use more on shore jurisdictions or they continue to use offshore jurisdictions?

Malik S. SarwarK2 Leaders
What’s the future of Discretionary and Advisory Portfolio Management in the Middle East?
Private wealth management – is this a time of dramatic change in the Middle East?
Is hiring top performers sustainable? Focus on hiring/grooming young talent?
Have we seen any examples of tangible success in digital wealth management in the US?

Nirav Dinesh Kumar ShahFAME Advisory
Is privacy an interesting topic for the GCC region today?
Do tax changes force clients to think about reporting and consequences?

Peter HuberZurich International
What are some of the trends that we are seeing in the insurance industry globally?
How would you explain the opportunity that UAE represents to Zurich International?

Philip StoryInvestors Trust
What are the developing regional opportunities you can service from Dubai?

Shiraz HabibFirst Abu Dhabi Bank
Are clients overly concentrated on risky assets? Are they becoming more diversified?
How will we move to a fee for service and deliver advice?

Yann MrazekM/HQ
What are their preferred jurisdictions, Local? Foreign? Do you think the DIFC and ADGM are now robust centres for wealth management, protection and structuring?


Panel Discussions 

We held 5 interactive panel discussions throughout the day – which involved senior industry practitioners who we invited to participate and share their thoughts. We have also incorporated into the summaries below the briefing notes which speakers sent to us in advance of the event. Plus, we have included the results of audience polling as well as questions we received from delegates. Click on each headline to view the PDFs.

Driving the Middle East Wealth Management Proposition Forward
A panel of eminent private bankers and asset managers assembled to cogitate on the state of the Middle East wealth management market. If there was one overriding conclusion from the experts, it was that the client must be first, last and everything in between. In a world both challenged and enhanced by technology, the wealth management market, at least in the Middle East, will likely remain driven by human skills and relationships., both through the good and the more difficult market conditions.

Panel Members
Sean KelleherChief Executive Officer, Mondial
Ashok SardanaManaging Director, Continental Group
Cedric LizinManaging Director, Head Wealth Management, Dubai Branch, UBS
Bart KendallDirector of Wealth Management, Globaleye
Sai NarainRegional Head of Sales & Distribution, Head of International Markets, HSBC Bank


Digital Solutions for Faster, Cheaper and Smarter Wealth Management
A smart panel of digital solutions experts and online platform providers mulled over the state-of-the-art for digitalisation in the global wealth management industry, and its applications to the current environment in the Middle East. The delegates at the Hubbis Middle East Wealth Management Forum were treated to some sharp insights on topics ranging from digital adoption to the arrival of Big Tech.

Panel members
Damian HitchenChief Executive Officer, Middle East & Asia, Swissquote
Yunus SelantRegional Manager Middle East & Africa, Allfunds Bank
Philip StoryHead of Distribution, EMEA, Investors Trust
F. Edward LopezChief Revenue Officer, JHC Financial


What Challenges do Wealthy Families in the Middle East Face Today?
Expert panellists on matters of family wealth and transition assembled at the Hubbis Middle East Wealth Management Forum to mine down into current issues of concern for high-net-worth (HNW) families in the region. They surveyed the challenges to wealth preservation, including staying on the right side of the mercurial local and global tax regulations, investing smartly and compliantly, fears over loss of privacy, and the relative benefits of onshore structuring in the UAE versus the traditional offshore routes, and how to smoothly transition wealth to the younger generations.

Panel members
Laurence BlackRegional Director, Client Solutions, EMEA, Asiaciti Trust
Yann MrazekManaging Partner, M/HQ
Nirav Dinesh Kumar ShahDirector, FAME Advisory
Tim DentonVice President - Head of Trust & Wealth Structuring, Emirates NBD
Kimberley Wilks, Senior Manager, Tax - Consulting Services, PwC


Developing the product and advisory proposition in the Middle East
The Hubbis Midde East Wealth Management Forum offered the audience to listen in to a fascinating, broad-ranging discussion covering the development of the Middle East high-net-worth (NHW) investor psychology, the wealth management industry’s evolution and perspectives on global asset allocation.

Panel members
Biswajit DasguptaChief Investment Officer, Head of Global Markets, Emirates Investment Bank
Shiraz HabibManaging Director & Head of Investment Solutions, First Abu Dhabi Bank
Malik S. SarwarCEO, K2 Leaders
Matein Khaled, Chief Investment Officer, Asas Capital


Opportunities for GCC’s HNWIs: Investment Experts Survey Global Landscape
In the final panel discussion of the Hubbis Middle East Wealth Management Forum, several leading investment professionals and senior assets and markets experts surveyed the opportunities for investors in the GCC region and analysed the key developments that have emerged and the key products and trends to watch out for in the future.

Panel members
Nick Savastano
Head of Offshore Global Life Groups and Middle East Financial Institutions, Invesco
Oliver KettlewellDirector of Fixed Income, Mashreq Capital
Nisarg TrivediMiddle East Sales Director, Schroders
Andrew NaylorDirector, Central Banks & Public Policy, World Gold Council



Below are summaries of the Presentations and Wealth TALKS delivered at the event. These were 10-minute slots hosted either by senior industry practitioners who we invited to speak (Wealth TALKS), or by some of our event partners (Presentations). Also listed with each summary are links to the presentation slides (where these are made available by speakers). Click on each headline to view the web versions of these – from which you can also access the PDFs.

Time to Evolve with Agile and Innovative Ways of working
Peter Huber
, Chief Executive Officer of Zurich International (Zurich Insurance Group) is at the cutting edge of the international life insurance market’s evolution. He told the audience at the Hubbis Middle East Wealth Management Forum that the global economic environment remains challenging, regulation is intensifying, digitalisation is advancing, however at the same time that the growth of private wealth globally offers outstanding potential for firms that can forge and maintain their own unique identity with customers.
View Slides

Fintech, its Implementation and the Bottom Line for Financial Service Providers
Fahad Versey, Head of Distribution for the UAE at Union Insurance is a keen proponent of fintech, which is revolutionising the delivery of financial services across the globe. In the world of insurance, fintech brings many challenges and opportunities that Versey outlined to the delegates at the Hubbis Middle East Wealth Management Forum.
View Slides

Time is Money in Financial Services
Philip Story, Head of Distribution for EMEA at Investors Trust Assurance (ITA), advised attendees at the Hubbis Middle East Wealth Management Forum that embracing new technological systems and solutions can enhance customer service and increase earnings. Streamlining processes, delivering upon promises and prioritising face-to-face client contact are the keys to successful wealth management for today’s world. In addition, deciding early whether to aim for scale or boutique specialisation will help focus efforts and assets in the right direction.
View Slides

Casamont Highlights the Cyprus Prime Real Estate and Citizenship Programme
An unusual diversion from the typical Hubbis event agenda appeared in the form of a presentation on the Cyprus real estate market and how it can be blended to the country’s citizenship by investment programme. The talk was presented by another rarity in the form of Russian citizen Ilya Kustov, who is  senior manager of Casamont Cyprus, which is promoting exceptional lifestyle properties such as the homes found on Citrine Estates.
View Slides

Family Wealth Protection and Succession – Trusts and Structures for the MENA Region
Laurence BlackRegional Director, Client Solutions, EMEA at Asiaciti Trust is an expert in the arena of structuring family wealth for preservation and ease of transition to family members and younger generations. Dynastic planning is vital to ensure family harmony and personal legacy aspirations and due care and attention is essential. And nowadays, the GCC region offers more potential for onshore structures, rather than clients turning only to offshore vehicles, in synch with what is now a worldwide trend towards onshore and mid-shore.
View Slides

Transformational Wealth Management: Anticipating and Fulfilling Client Life Goals
Malik S. Sarwar, CEO of wealth management firm K2 Leaders and Chairman of Hubbis, has innovative views on the state of the wealth management industry and what its stakeholders need to do to take it to the next level of sustained success. He provided a fascinating, energetic interactive workshop at the Hubbis Middle East Wealth Management Forum in Dubai on January 22nd, 2019, presenting his ideas about what makes a well-rounded advisor and a successful wealth advisory firm.

How Technology Can Enhance the Delivery of Wealth Management
Damian Hitchen, CEO for the Middle East & Asia at Swissquote presented a fascinating Workshop to explain how in the world of financial services and wealth management, client demand is evolving rapidly. He surveyed why, and how, incumbent banks and other providers must adapt their business models and embrace the new technologies that are on offer. He warned that to fail in that endeavour could put the entire enterprise at risk.
View Slides