Industry veteran, Edmund Koh is to take up office as the first Singaporean President of the Swiss investment bank, UBS Asia Pacific. Prior to this elevation, Koh was serving as head of wealth management for Asia Pacific and as country head Singapore. Koh would now also be a member of the group executive board (GEB) of UBS Group AG, as both positions would be effective from 1st January, 2019.
Besides having been a part of UBS for six years since 2012, Koh brings with him over 30 years' experience in the financial industry having served in various senior roles over the years. Before joining UBS, he was with Ta Chong Bank, Taiwan where he served as President and Director for almost half a decade. He had also served with DBS Bank, Singapore as Managing Director and regional head for consumer banking.
Koh’s predecessor, Kathy Shih had also served as head of wealth management for UBS Asia Pacific during which the firm commenced domestic wealth management operations in Japan, Taiwan and China having grown from around 60 Bn Swiss francs (S$83.03 Bn) to nearly 300 billion francs between 2002 and 2015. Shih was also instrumental in driving contributions I order to develop UBS's philanthropic and community affairs agenda within the region.
Group chief executive at UBS, Sergio Ermotti paid tribute to Ms Shih and expressed gratitude for the "immensely positive impact" she made on UBS during her years of service.
"We would not be the clear number one wealth manager in Asia-Pacific without Kathy's contribution and I wish her all the best for her well-deserved retirement," Mr Ermotti said. "I welcome Ed and Markus to the GEB. They both have an excellent track record at the firm and I'm convinced they'll continue to help us drive the success of UBS," he added.
Koh would be joined by UBS veteran, Markus Ronner on the GEB effective Nov 1, 2018 as head of group compliance, regulatory and governance and would be looking into compliance and operational risk control, governmental and regulatory affairs, as well as investigations and governance matters at the group level. Currently head of group regulatory and governance, Ronner joined the bank as an apprentice in 1981, and during his long stint with the firm has served various positions including head of group internal audit, Chief Operating Officer - asset management and head of products and services.
While Koh indeed has a legacy to carry and to live up to, it is interesting and gratifying to see the senior role clusters across companies and sectors becoming a lot more inclusive and essentially global.
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