UBS shakes up flagship wealth business with new unit, memo says



ZURICH, June 27 (Reuters) – UBS is shaking up its wealth-management arm, the bank’s flagship business, to boost its offerings to ultra-rich clients, the division’s new co-leaders said in their first internal memo sent on Thursday and seen by Reuters.

UBS will create a new unit from July 1, named GWM Solutions, to integrate various client offerings, such as investment management, lending, family and institutional wealth management and alternative investments, the memo from Rob Karofsky and Iqbal Khan said.

The unit will be led by former Credit Suisse banker Yves-Alain Sommerhalder who will be based in Zurich and New York and report to Karofsky and Khan.

In a separate memo, the bank said it was creating a unit called “Unified Global Alternatives,” shifting some of its alternative asset-management products closer to its wealth arm.

The new unit will incorporate alternative products from its wealth and asset management businesses, including real estate and private market investments.

Reuters reported in May that UBS was considering whether parts of the asset-management unit should be absorbed by its larger wealth-management activities as the bank aimed to cut costs.

Wealth management is UBS’ flagship business, making up more than half of total revenues at the Swiss bank, which last year took over Credit Suisse in a state-sponsored rescue and is in the process of integrating its former rival.

Last month, UBS said it would split its top wealth-management role, creating new responsibilities for Karofsky and Khan as two leading contenders to eventually succeed CEO Sergio Ermotti.

In a further move, Latin America will become its own business unit led by Marcello Chilov, Credit Suisse’s former chief executive officer in Brazil.

In the United States, JPMorgan banker Michael Camacho will join UBS as head of U.S. global wealth management, starting Sept. 16.



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Edmund Shing, PhD

Global Chief Investment Officer
BNP Paribas Wealth Management

Edmund has over 29 years of experience in financial markets in a wide variety of positions, ranging from proprietary trading to portfolio manager in a number of financial institutions in London and Paris.  He previously held the role of Global Head of Equity and Derivative Strategy at BNP Paribas in London from 2015 to 2020, and has been Chief Investment Officer at BNP Paribas Wealth Management since November 2020.

Edmund is responsible for piloting our investment strategy and will continues to rollout out recommendations and themes with actionable advice that brings our expertise to our clients and support to our client-facing teams.  In this time of change, his expertise in following and anticipating markets is a true value added for both our customers and those at Wealth Management who serve them.

Edmund has a PhD in Cognitive and Computing Science from the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom, and has done advanced studies in Knowledge-Based Systems and in Experimental Psychology.  He is an EFFAS-certified financial analyst. He has also authored the book “The Idle Investor” published by Harriman House in 2015, proposing 3 simple investment strategies that take only a few minutes to execute per month.

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