UBS Dubai taps Credit Suisse bankers to target wealthy Indians

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UBS Group AG in Dubai is hiring a group of private bankers from rival Credit Suisse Group AG as the Swiss lender continues to expand its Gulf business that caters to India’s wealthy diaspora.

Sanjay Advani and members of his team that serve non-resident Indians are set to join UBS in the coming months, people familiar with the matter said, asking not to be named because the information is private.

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Their appointment is part of push by UBS to focus on the growing number of rich Indians living overseas at a time when the sub-continent is seeing rising wealth. The Asian nation recently overtook the UK to become the world’s fifth largest economy.

UBS in Singapore also recently hired three private bankers from Credit Suisse to boost its NRI coverage. Niels Zilkens runs UBS’s NRI business globally.

A representative for Credit Suisse said the bank remains fully committed to the Middle East and will continue to invest. Clients are being served by its existing team, they said. Advani and a representative for UBS declined to comment.

In the oil-rich Middle East, UBS has been reshuffling its wealth management business to tap a growing pool of rich clients. The business hub of Dubai, where Advani and his team are based, continues to be a magnet for global capital after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

UBS has split coverage of rich clients from the Gulf, Saudi Arabia and NRIs, and last year hired veteran private banker Lilian Simerly from Julius Baer Group Ltd. In 2021, it also poached a private banking team from Credit Suisse in Dubai. Elsewhere, it expanded its wealth team in Israel and set up a new office in Doha.

Advani previously spent seven years working at Credit Suisse and also almost eight years at Societe Generale SA’s private banking arm, according to his LinkedIn profile.

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