Ben Snee, CEO
How has the past year affected LGT Vestra and, more broadly, the wealth management industry?
It has been a year like no other, from all perspectives. As an industry, we have been fortunate to weather the storm well. This is due primarily to the nature of our business and the asset-base of clients' money we are privileged to manage, combined with robust performance of financial markets over the last 12 months, despite the initial drawdown in March last year.
As a firm, we have been able to deliver strong investment performance and make the transition to remote working seamless for our clients, both of which have served us well during the pandemic. We have also been as proactive as possible in supporting our people through the sometimes very challenging circumstances of lockdown. For many, it has not been easy dealing with personal circumstances and balancing working life. However, everyone has pulled together incredibly well to support each other and I am proud of the firm and how our workforce has adapted.
2020 was also the year LGT Vestra became 100% owned by LGT Group, which was a great milestone for us and something about which both parties are extremely pleased. The support we receive, the financial strength of LGT and the collaboration between us only strengthens our business and ensures ongoing security for our clients.
How has the past year been a catalyst for further change?
There is no doubt the forced change to a remote working environment has initiated change. The new tools with which we now communicate are here to stay and should result in greater efficiency when we revert back to an office-based environment. In addition, the time at home, coupled with how fortunate we feel to be in our sector, has focused our minds on a key cornerstone of our ethos: giving back to society. We have pushed forward with a number of sustainability initiatives and have been channelling our charitable giving efforts to maximise their impact in the current environment.
We have also been pointing the lens inside the business, with the aim of improving the environment for our workforce, both physically when we eventually return to the office, as well as an increased focus on employee wellbeing, better work-life balance and diversity and inclusion.
Finally, the need for regular communication in an extreme environment with volatile financial markets, combined with the lack of face-to-face interaction, has resulted in positive development in our client communications. The launch of The Brief, Spotlight videos and numerous virtual client events have all been constructive additions coming out of this difficult situation.
What does the future hold for LGT Vestra?
We are excited about the future. There is a positive feeling in the business, in spite of the challenges we have all faced over the last year. Our mission statement is to add long-term value to our four stakeholders: our clients, our shareholder, our people and society; we will continue to do this in the post-pandemic world.
We have taken time to review our goals and objectives over the last few months, looking at the values that underpin the culture of the firm. We believe that, by adhering to these values and constantly looking to the needs of our stakeholders, our business will continue to flourish. Above all, we want to continue to run a business where our clients love being clients and our people love being part of the firm.
LGT reports good results and strong net asset inflows in 2020
LGT achieved broad-based growth in the 2020 financial year and generated a group profit of CHF 291.5 million. Despite the extraordinary conditions, LGT reported strong net asset inflows of CHF 11.6 billion (+5%). Assets under management increased 6% to CHF 240.7 billion as at the end of 2020. LGT is well-positioned and confident that it will continue to achieve profitable growth in 2021, the year of its centennial.
LGT's good results for 2020 underscore the strength of its client business. In a market environment impacted at all levels by the coronavirus pandemic, LGT’s key priority was to serve as a reliable partner for its clients at all times. LGT achieved further organic revenue growth as a result of its well-established and broadly diversified international client business. In October 2020, LGT completed the final stage of its acquisition of LGT Vestra and bought the remaining equity held by the executive partners.
In 2021, the year of its centenary, LGT is very well-positioned both in the market and to create further long-term value for its clients, employees and other stakeholders. LGT is confident that it will continue to generate profitable growth in 2021, despite a market environment that is expected to remain challenging due to the coronavirus pandemic.
H.S.H. Prince Max von und zu Liechtenstein, Chairman of LGT: “Last year, we took important steps to strengthen our market position through our new organisational structure, and we will continue to systematically implement this structure in 2021. The fact that we are celebrating our centennial this year gives us additional incentive to further hone LGT’s strengths for the future and create lasting value for our clients, the economy and society.”
Read more about LGT's 2020 financial results.
Read more from The Brief.
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