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Industry veteran Edmund Koh named first Singaporean president of UBS Asia Pacific

SWISS investment bank UBS has appointed industry veteran Edmund Koh as the first Singaporean president of UBS Asia Pacific, promoting him from his previous position as head of wealth management for Asia Pacific and country head Singapore.

He also joins the group executive board (GEB) of UBS Group AG, with both positions effective Jan 1, 2019.

Mr Koh brings more than 30 years' experience in senior roles in the financial industry. He has spent six years with UBS, having first joined the bank in 2012 as head of wealth management for South-east Asia, coming from Taiwan's Ta Chong Bank where he served for four years as president and director.

Before that, he was managing director and regional head, consumer banking at DBS Bank in Singapore from 2001 to 2008.

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In his new role, Mr Koh takes over from Kathy Shih, who retires after more than three decades at UBS. Ms Shih was also previously head of wealth management for Asia Pacific at UBS from 2002 to 2015, during which invested assets grew from around 60 billion Swiss francs (S$83.03 billion) to nearly 300 billion francs, and the firm opened domestic wealth management operations in Japan, Taiwan and China.

Ms Shih made significant contributions to the development of UBS's philanthropic and community affairs programmes in the region, the bank said.

Meanwhile, UBS veteran Markus Ronner will also join Mr Koh on UBS's GEB effective Nov 1, 2018 as head of group compliance, regulatory and governance, where he will be responsible for compliance and operational risk control; governmental and regulatory affairs; and investigations and governance matters at the group level.

Mr Ronner, who is currently head of group regulatory and governance, joined the firm as an apprentice in 1981, and during his time with the bank has held various positions including head of group internal audit; chief operating officer asset management; and head of products and services.

UBS's group chief executive Sergio Ermotti paid tribute to Ms Shih, thanking her for the "immensely positive impact" she made on UBS during her service.

"We would not be the clear number one wealth manager in Asia-Pacific without Kathy's contribution and I wish her all the best for her well-deserved retirement," Mr Ermotti said.

"I welcome Ed and Markus to the GEB. They both have an excellent track record at the firm and I'm convinced they'll continue to help us drive the success of UBS," Mr Ermotti added.