Credit Suisse Cutting Jobs in Middle East in Wealth Management Overhaul


(Bloomberg) — Credit Suisse Group AG is laying off about 20 people in the Middle East as it restructures wealth management activities in the region, according to people familiar with the matter.



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The job cuts — focused on Dubai — follow the decision to incorporate the business that deals with non-resident Indian and Africa clients under Middle East head Bruno Daher, the people said, asking not to be identified because the plans are private. Raj Sehgal, former head of that unit, is now the chairman of NRI and Africa.

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“We are committed to the non-resident Indian segment, and in order to further accelerate growth, we are bringing the operations in the broader Middle East and Africa region under one single leadership,” a bank spokeswoman said in an emailed statement. She declined to comment on the job cuts.

Chief Executive Officer Thomas Gottstein announced his first major revamp of the Swiss lender at the end of July, simplifying the bank’s structure. Credit Suisse is merging its advisory and its trading business into a single division led by global markets head Brian Chin, while plans to cut as many as 500 jobs in Switzerland were also disclosed last month.

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Philipp Wehle’s international wealth management unit has been marked out as a growth area with the aim to boost revenue from the ultra-wealthy while also bringing investment banking for mid-sized clients in the EMEA region under his control. He’s also laid out his own divisional revamp, reducing the number of regional reports to undo a structure created by predecessor Iqbal Khan.

Credit Suisse discovered fraud at its Middle-East and Africa private banking business earlier this year, Bloomberg reported last month. The Swiss lender dismissed a Zurich-based banker who forged documentation on an over-the-counter contract for an African wealth management client, according to people familiar with the matter.

The deception led to a loss of about 10 million francs ($11 million) for the bank and also hurt other clients, the people said, asking not to be identified as the matter is private. The fraud and losses were booked in the unit led by Sehgal.

International wealth management, which caters to Credit Suisse’s wealthy clients outside of Switzerland and Asia, reported provisions for credit losses of 74 million francs in the first six months.

(Adds details of provisions at international wealth management in the eighth paragraph)

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