“And just like that, 2023 is over! Time flies!”

What a year it has been! We hope you had an opportunity to relax with friends and family over the festive period.

Following my comments in the November newsletter, it’s amazing that three years have passed since we received our license in principle from the DFSA. We are incredibly proud of the successes we’ve had in that time, the talent we’ve attracted and the growth we’ve achieved. We owe our clients and partners a tremendous debt of gratitude for their trust and support. Without them, we could not have accomplished so much since our establishment in 2021.

We would also like to say thank you to those who have participated in our stakeholder satisfaction survey. These surveys are important to help us gauge our performance and ensure that we meet our stakeholders’ expectations. We will review the latest feedback by mid-January and welcome any constructive criticism that can help us improve our offerings.
Team GSB

I am delighted to introduce you to Jon Urquhart, Christopher Somers and Craig Ritchie, who have joined GSB.

Jon has been appointed as a Managing Partner and Co-Head of GSB Private in the UK. He brings with him a wealth of experience in financial services, having spent 18 years in the industry. Prior to joining GSB, Jon worked as the Director of Mortgages at Mantra Group, where he specialized in large loans for Private Banking clients. He also financed some of the most prestigious addresses in London during his tenure.

Chris has joined as a Senior Partner in GSB Private’s banking team and will counsel GSB’s high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth clients seeking private banking and finance solutions. Chris has covered markets in the Middle East for more than a decade. He has earned the respect of his clients and has become a trusted advisor to many leading UHNW individuals and families in the GCC and globally. Before joining GSB, Chris held senior positions at Standard Chartered Bank in the UAE and the Royal Bank of Canada in London. Before this, he served as a commissioned British Army Officer for 17 years, having graduated from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

Craig joins as Partner based in the Dubai office. As a Chartered Financial Planner, he works with clients in the UK, Europe, Middle East and Asia. After graduating with a degree in Finance from the University of Aberdeen, Craig worked in the pensions industry in Edinburgh before moving into financial planning. He is interested and highly experienced in the areas of tax planning, pensions and retirement. Craig will work alongside his brother Stuart Ritchie as well as Mauro de Santis Bo and Yazmin Boden, who all recently joined the business from AES International.

Welcome to the team!

Further appointments will be announced in 2024 as we scale out our presence in the UAE, UK and KSA.

Charity Work

As is a GSB tradition at this time of year, we embarked on supporting an annual Santa Shoebox project, an initiative set up in Dubai. The idea simple; to fill shoeboxes with thoughtful gifts and essentials, ensuring that each box carries a message of appreciation and holiday cheer to individuals in labour camps.

Building on the success of the past few years, effort was put into sourcing boxes, items, and wrapping paper to fill 50 boxes for distribution this week to spread the joy and make a positive impact in our community.

We achieved an outstanding feat by filling, wrapping, and distributing nearly double our target, with 97 boxes and bags (we ran out of boxes), surpassing our target with resounding success! For a second year in a row, we’ve put smiles on lots of faces, and I know our contribution was greatly appreciated!

It was a truly sterling effort, and I know we’ll get over 100 next year!

Thanks to everyone involved, and a special thanks to Naomi Wharam-Adatia and Kelsey Bolton for being our Santa Shoebox Champions!

New London Office

Delighted to end 2023 and the start of 2024 on a high, by announcing that we have secured a new London office for 2024. 1 Cornhill, The City of London, EC3V 3ND.

Located in the heart of the financial district, close to the Bank of England and Royal Exchange, Cornhill is known for its historic significance and prestigious surroundings. It is also well-connected, with great access to public transportation, including nearby tube stations such as Bank and Monument.

As we develop our expansion plans in the UK, this new space will play a crucial role in driving our growth. Its strategic location and design will provide an ideal platform for us to showcase GSB to a wider audience, and establish ourselves as a significant player in the market.

Finally and to sign off 2023, everyone at GSB wishes you and your loved ones a joyous New Year’s Eve celebration and a fantastic start to 2024. Thank you for being an integral part of our journey.

We hope you enjoy reading this month’s newsletter. We always welcome any comments, thoughts or feedback. If you would like to send us any suggestions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Yours Sincerely,

Ross Whatnall
CEO & Founding Partner

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