Private credit, global real estate and geopolitical risk were top of mind at Deutsche Bank’s inaugural Emerging Markets Family Office Forum, the most recent addition to our global series of events aimed at family office representatives.


More than 100 attendees from Southeast Asia, North Asia, Greater South Asia and the Middle East joined us for the two-day forum held in Singapore in early May. 


Panel discussion topics included rising geopolitical risks; investment strategies for permanent capital, private credit and global real estate; and how to create timeless legacies with art.


Host Marco Pagliara, Deutsche Bank Private Bank's Head of Emerging Markets, said: “We are delighted by the enthusiastic reception for our inaugural EM family office forum. In the burgeoning Asia/Middle East corridor of investment and growth, we are committed to supporting family offices make connections and seize investment opportunities.”  

The event began with a welcome dinner at Singapore’s National Gallery, where world-renowned international art curator Dr Amin Jaffer discussed creating timeless legacies with art with Private Bank Vice Chairman Salman Mahdi. Dr Jaffer is responsible for the Al Thani Collection, exhibited at the Hôtel de la Marine in Paris, on behalf of the emir of Qatar’s family.


Describing the transformative role art can play in society, Dr Jaffer said art can speak many languages without the need for any translator and can be “a uniting force between cultures".

Key topics and speakers at the Deutsche Bank Emerging Markets Family Office Forum 2024 in Singapore

Investment returns and asset classes were widely discussed during the forum. During a poll taken at the event, directly owned real estate in Asia was voted a preferred asset class, and the segment attracting most interest from family offices is data centres and AI-related infrastructure. Family office investors also ranked Asia as their preferred region for asset allocation in the next three years, even amid rising geopolitical risk.


Panelists also discussed the risk/ return opportunity with private credit, risks related to environmental issues and the growing need to embed environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations into portfolios.


Other guest speakers at the forum included international affairs experts Mikko Huotari, executive director of the Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS), and Kirsten Fontenrose, a non-resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, who discussed rising geopolitical tensions between the EU, U.S., Middle East, Russia and China.


Family office investors Angela Huang, Arvind Khattar, Lin Shi, Sean Low, Christina Gaw, and Muhannad Abdulhasan shared their investment insights and experiences in panels with Deutsche Bank experts Christian Nolting, Amit Khattar, Raheman Meghji, and Saydam Salaheddin.

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