Edmond de Rothschild to open Saudi office and launch debt platform


DUBAI (Reuters) – Edmond de Rothschild Group, a specialist in asset management and private banking, is set to open an office in Saudi Arabia this year and launch a platform to provide debt finance for infrastructure projects there, the Swiss bank said on Thursday.

The platform could help Saudi Arabia with its vast Vision 2030 plan which aims to wean the economy off oil, but has so far attracted limited investment from outside the kingdom.

The plan, spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, the kingdom’s prime minister and de facto day-to-day ruler, includes building massive new urban developments and investing in various sectors to help create thousands of new jobs.

Edmond de Rothschild will work with SNB Capital to set up the platform to help fund infrastructure projects across the Gulf country, the two companies said in a joint statement.

The Swiss bank, which has over 5 billion euros ($5.4 billion) in assets under management in infrastructure debt, has also set up a joint venture with Watar Partners to provide infrastructure debt advisory services to Saudi family offices and institutional investors.

The partnership is expected to go live in the second half of this year, together with the opening of a local office in Riyadh.

“This is a logical next step for our group, building on the long-standing business relationships we have with the country,” the Geneva-based bank’s CEO Ariane de Rothschild was quoted as saying in the statement.

Edmond de Rothschild last year also expanded its presence in Dubai, in the neighbouring United Arab Emirates, with an advisory office.

($1 = 0.9266 euros)

(Reporting by Federico Maccioni; Editing by Mark Potter)

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