Credit Suisse opens Riyadh branch to serve affluent clients in Saudi Arabia

The new branch will allow the lender to offer more services to high net worth individuals, corporate and government clients

Swiss lender Credit Suisse opened a new branch in Riyadh to offer wealth management services to its affluent clients in the kingdom.

The branch in Riyadh strengthens the lender’s franchise in the country and expands its footprint in the Middle East, it said in a statement on Monday.

Credit Suisse's Riyadh branch will allow it to provide broader wealth management offering, including lending services, foreign exchange and treasury products, account management and deposits.

The bank’s clients in the kingdom will continue to have access to existing local and international trading capabilities as well as investment banking services through the new franchise, it said.

“I am excited to begin this new and important chapter in Saudi Arabia as we expand in this key growth market and invest in ways to better serve our clients in the region,” Bruno Daher, Credit Suisse chief executive for Middle East and North Africa, said.

The lender looks forward to building on its current market position while providing an integrated banking experience for “our high net worth individuals and institutional clients in Saudi Arabia”, he said.

Credit Suisse has appointed Majid Al Gwaiz as chief executive of its operations in Riyadh, who will report to Mr Daher.

Mr Al Gwaiz will be driving the bank’s strategy and local solutions for high net worth and ultra-high net worth clients, family owned companies, government and government-related entities and Saudi corporations, the bank said.

International banks have increasingly looked to expand their footprint in the kingdom to tap business opportunities in the Arab world’s largest economy.

The Zurich-based lender has maintained a presence in the wider Middle East since 1967 and has been operating in Saudi Arabia, Opec’s biggest oil producer, since 2005.

The new branch, regulated by the Saudi Central Bank, is a “natural progression to further build the local footprint” and reflects Credit Suisse’s growth ambitions in the region, it said.