Investment banking: UBS puts its best foot forward in the Gulf
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Investment banking: UBS puts its best foot forward in the Gulf

Like other global investment banks that are rushing to send their best talent to the Gulf, UBS is seeking to take advantage of the opportunities there.

Alex Wilmot-Sitwell, UBS

"I can think of few places in the world where the client overlap between wealth management, asset management and the investment bank is more obvious"
Alex Wilmot-Sitwell, UBS

In a bid to boost its presence in a region that is one of its weak spots, it made a number of senior appointments in the Middle East last month. These include a new, Gulf-based, regional chief, Per Larsson. Peter Burnett, Larsson’s predecessor, was based in London.

Until recently, Larsson was chief executive of Borse Dubai and the Dubai International Financial Exchange (DIFX).

Larsson’s appointment as chief executive for the Middle East and North Africa came just a week after UBS announced that it would double its Middle East investment banking team by the end of the year.

The bank said at the same time that it had been granted a licence to open in Saudi Arabia and that it was applying for a licence to operate in the Qatar Financial Centre. It also said it would move an equity research team to Dubai by the end of the year.

The Saudi team at UBS will start with about 20 people, probably including staff in asset management, in the investment bank, and in wealth management.

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