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Former SMRT CEO Desmond Kuek to join UBS global wealth management

Desmond Kuek - CV photo 2019.jpg
Former SMRT CEO Desmond Quek will take on the role of divisional vice chairman for global wealth management at UBS from Feb 18, 2019.

Private Bank UBS has appointed former SMRT Corp chief executive Desmond Kuek as divisional vice chairman for global wealth management, effective Feb 18, 2019.

Mr Kuek will be based in Singapore, reporting to Joe Stadler, head of ultra high net worth, and Edmund Koh, president of UBS APAC.

Mr Kuek was previously president and group CEO of SMRT, stepping down from that role in April 2018.

Before SMRT, he was Permanent Secretary at Singapore's Ministry of Environment and Water Resources (MEWR) and also Chief of Army and Chief of Defence Force at the Singapore Armed Forces. He also served on the boards of Singapore Technologies Engineering and its subsidiaries, Defence Science and Technology Agency; and on the boards of the Housing and Development Board, Jurong Town Corp, International Enterprise Singapore and the Civil Service College.

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In a statement, UBS said Mr Kuek’s experience as an executive, government official and board member will be of great value in strengthening its relationships with existing clients, forging new ones and growing the business across Asia Pacific.

"Desmond is a great intellect and strategic thinker. He is tenacious; always calm under pressure and not afraid to take on the toughest challenges with commitment and perseverance. His rich and diverse range of experiences driving complex businesses through innovation and transformation will serve UBS well into its next chapter. I am very happy to welcome him as a colleague,” Mr Koh said.