The move would make it the first Swiss private bank to open in the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) – the the UAE capital’s global financial services centre.
Lombard Odier is already present in the Dubai market, where it opened in 2007, expanding its reach across the region.
“The decision to broaden our UAE operations is testament to our faith in regional growth and economic stability, and our confidence in the Emirates’ future as a key business location and wealth generator,” said Arnaud Leclercq, capital partner and head of new markets at Lombard Odier.
Choosing to open a branch in Abu Dhabi stems from the fact that the UAE, according to the firm, is one of their fastest-growing business regions and works as a bridge between its European and Asian operations.
According to Nigel Sillitoe, chief executive of communication and research firm Insight Discovery, Abu Dhabi is gaining momentum, with his business recently generating more clients from the capital than its ‘rival’ Dubai.
“This is a positive development for Abu Dhabi, in particular ADGM, as nearly every international private bank has its HQ for the Middle East down the road in the Dubai International Financial Centre,” he told International Adviser.
“What’s noticeable is that ADGM is attracting a growing number of regulated entities, which is definitely a sign that ADGM is building momentum.”
While the opening of the Lombard Odier branch is still subject to regulatory approval, the ADGM’s Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) has given “approval-in-principle” and has welcomed the move from the asset manager.
“We are pleased that Lombard Odier has plans to better service and render their investment expertise to the local families and regional institutions via the ADGM growth platform,” said Richard Teng, chief executive of the FSRA.
“As an international finance corporation and financial regulator, we will continue to enhance our regulatory framework with innovative solutions that support businesses and financial institutions in their quest for sustainable growth and stronger presence in the Middle East and North Africa region.”