Swiss private bank Pictet has revealed plans to ramp up on hiring private bankers this year. The announcement follows the poaching of an 18-person team in the Middle East last month.
Geneva-based Pictet will hire up to 300 bankers in its wealth management and asset management arms this year, senior partner Nicolas Pictet said in an interview with the FT. The effort represents an 50% hike on its recruiting efforts last year, and follows the entrance of ex-Julius Baer boss Boris Collardi as a partner.
Overall, the partners discussed hiring as many as 500 additional bankers - a more than 10% rise in its overall work force. Many are expected to come from Julius Baer, where Collardi assembled his team by recruiting aggressively.
“This year is going to be a difficult year for sure for the wealth management industry. There is no tailwind from markets.”
As in an interview in Switzerland earlier this month, Nicolas Pictet downplayed what bankers refer to as the 'Collardi effect', or ginning up growth by recruiting and acquisition, as noted by specialised news outlet finews: "Profitability and size is not the focus. We want to deliver value and do good for our clients."
Come the end of next year, Collardi will work corner-to-corner from his old rivals when Pictet moves into prestigious new quarters on Zurich's Bahnhofstrasse. Pictet's hiring will focus on German-speaking Switzerland, where it has traditionally been weaker than rivals, the Middle East, and Asia, Nicolas Pictet said.
Pictet is set to focus on expanding its services in three core markets: German-speaking Switzerland — where Zurich is one of the world's wealth capitals — the Middle East and Asia.
However, despite the hiring spree, Pictet said he was in no doubt that the year ahead for the wealth management industry would be tough, saying: "This year is going to be a difficult year for sure for the wealth management industry. There is no tailwind from markets."