Credit Suisse Group has made three senior hires to continue strengthening its impact advisory and finance (IAF) department in Singapore, Zurich and London.
The Swiss bank said in a note that these appointments would complement Daniel Wild, who joined the IAF department as global head of environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategy in April this year.
James Gifford, based in Singapore, has been named head of impact advisory. In his newly-created role, Gifford will be responsible for advising private wealth clients globally while helping to drive Credit Suisse's impact thought leadership as well as impact industry development initiatives. He joins Credit Suisse from UBS, where he was responsible for impact investing at the firm's private banking unit.
Our significant investment in the sustainable finance and impact franchise with these strategic hires will allow us to broaden and deepen our IAF product offering and advisory practice to better serve our clients who aspire to invest more impactfully,” Marisa Drew
Credit Suisse said he was instrumental in championing the transition of financial markets to more sustainable investing, as well as investing with the intention to generate positive, measurable social and environmental benefits.
In 2004, Gifford founded the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investing (PRI), which now has more than 2,250 signatories including Credit Suisse, representing more than US$85trn in assets under management. He also established and developed the joint family office impact investing programme at Harvard University and the University of Zurich.
He will be reporting to both chief executive officer (CEO) of the IAF department Marisa Drew, and to Bernard Fung, head of wealth planning services for Asia-Pacific.
The Swiss group has also appointed Guillaume Bonnel as head of sustainable and impact products, to be based in Zurich.
Bonnel's responsibilities include managing the sustainable and impact product-offering suite, and driving associated product education and advisory services.
He joins Credit Suisse from Lombard Odier, where he worked for six years and was head of impact investing since 2016. At Lombard Odier, Bonnel was responsible for building the sustainable mandates business for the bank. Before that, he was a sustainable and responsible-investment adviser for various financial institutions, including BNP Paribas.
Bonnel has also a dual reporting line to Drew in IAF and to Steven Bates, head of investment product management within investment solutions and products.
Helen McDonald has been appointed to the London office, taking on the newly-created role of UK head of foundations and impact advisory services.
McDonald will be responsible for overseeing non-profit institutions in the UK and advising UK clients on their sustainable and impact investment goals.
She also joins from UBS where she was most recently head of charities, foundations and social investing. Prior to that, she worked at Goldman Sachs, SG Warburg Securities, and Kleinwort Benson Investment Management.
She will report both to the UK private banking team, led by Christian Berchem, CEO of Credit Suisse UK, and to the IAF department, led by Drew.
Marisa Drew said: "Our significant investment in the sustainable finance and impact franchise with these strategic hires will allow us to broaden and deepen our IAF product offering and advisory practice to better serve our clients who aspire to invest more impactfully."