Awards for Distinction 2013 – Family Office Services

AFD2013_Best Private Bank - Family Office Services

Credit Suisse

Bernard Fung

Bernard Fung
Head of Family Office Services and Philanthropy Advisory, Private Banking Asia Pacific
Credit Suisse

As Asian wealth matures, the region’s richest families find themselves facing a plethora of financial and non-financial issues. Private banks, in turn, find themselves vying with an assortment of other service providers to be the trusted advisors and most influential gatekeepers to a family’s fortunes.

Credit Suisse is one of the few banks in Asia that have already proven their leadership of this nascent, evolving landscape, thus making it the deserved winner of the Award for Best Private Bank – Family Office Services for three consecutive years.

Its much-talked about ‘family office hub’ in Singapore, that acts as an incubator for family offices helping them jump start their plans, is one patent differentiator that has proved to be extremely popular with clients. But the bank has excelled on several other fronts.

Asian Private Banker believes the experience of its family office team is another crucial advantage Credit Suisse has over its peers. A core team of five professionals works closely with relationship managers and family office clients, whilst other specialist teams become involved as needed. Bernard Fung, Head of Family Office Services and Philanthropy, Asia Pacific at the bank, spent several years as the Chief Executive of Innotech Advisors, the investment vehicle of Lord Sainsbury of Turville.

Having been a client himself, Fung is able to tailor the bank’s family office service offering so that it is both relevant to, and adds value for, its clients.

Additionally, the bank has acted as a mentor to several single family offices grappling with issues ranging from governance, set-up, infrastructure, wealth structuring, investment management, risk management, counter parties and costs. Whilst some private banks believe the best way of attracting and retaining family office clients is by offering competitive prices on deal execution, Credit Suisse has proven that to be an industry leader, a bank must contribute to the family office ecosystem in a consistent and meaningful manner. Encouraging the flow of information and sharing of best practices rather than ring-fencing individual clients, the bank hosts a family office roundtable every couple of months that allows single family offices to meet, network and learn. Subject to the ‘Chatham House Rule’, these events are meant to foster dialogue rather than deals.

In recognising the needs of fledgling and more mature family offices, Credit Suisse is a first mover amongst private banks to cater to the entire spectrum of family offices in Asia.