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Karam Hinduja on navigating a private bank and a family business

The $2.5bn wealth manager recently expanded its private banking services by launching new divisions that include private capital and strategic growth advisory.

Karam Hinduja on navigating a private bank and a family business

Over the last few months, Hinduja Bank’s wealth managers have had their hands full rebalancing client portfolios, according to CEO Karam Hinduja.

‘Our clients in the Middle East are increasingly looking beyond defensive investments, towards private banking services that marry entrepreneurship with ethical considerations,’ Hinduja, who took on the role in June, told Citywire Middle East.

Under his leadership, the $2.5bn wealth manager recently expanded its private banking services by launching new divisions that include private capital and strategic growth advisory.

In addition, the bank started to offer broader asset management and investment advisory that include fintech, clean energy and healthcare strategies. Hinduja noted that these were very well-received by UAE and other Middle East clients.

The lender also plans to leverage its Dubai operations for clients outside the Middle East to access growth opportunities in the region.

With a background in technology and impact investing, Hinduja seeks to increase his share of the Middle East market targeting the next generation of private banking clients.

‘As a bank, we target entrepreneurs. It’s a mindset, we know, that exists with multigenerational families and family offices in the Middle East. And it’s why strengthening ties with wealth creators in the region is a key pillar of the bank’s strategy under my leadership.’

According to industry estimates, the UAE alone has about 35,000 entrepreneurs. Dubai SME, an integrated division of UAE’s Department of Economic Development set up a resource for support and outreach for the emirate’s SME sector, has assisted in the formation of 6,053 Emirati enterprises and helped 571 projects take off. Hinduja clearly has his eye set on a pool of potential and is confident.

He is very optimistic for Q3 and beyond, and believes there has been a fundamental correction, not just financially but holistically, for the world.

‘Investors, particularly from younger generations, understand that wealth can no longer be detached from the world in which it was created,’ he said.

True to the family business

Having taken over the helm during a pandemic, Hinduja’s response to the crisis was to renew the bank’s focus on ‘what truly matters’.

Upholding his grandfather’s ethos at the start of the empire, the 29-year old plans to re-center on the principles and objectives that defined the bank when it was founded.

‘I want S.P. Hinduja Banque Privée not just to become a better global bank, but to redefine what private banking stands for. In doing so, we will uphold the values of our founder, my grandfather S.P. Hinduja.

‘Those values have informed our mission, to catalyze sustainable, global economic and social development while generating long-term value for our clients, through our multigenerational experience and reach,’ he said.

Operational since 2008, Hinduja Bank Middle East is the Dubai subsidiary of its parent bank in Switzerland which recently changed its name to S.P. Hinduja Banque Privée. The private bank also has offices London, Paris, New York, Chennai, Mumbai, Mauritius and Cayman Islands.

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