Jacqueline Hess has been appointed as vice chair of the board of directors of the new Vontobel SFA.
Vontobel Swiss Wealth Advisors and the former UBS Swiss Financial Advisers have announced that they will become Vontobel SFA in 2023.
According to the firm, Peter Romanzina will become CEO of the new Vontobel SFA and Jürgen Wegner will be appointed deputy CEO
Meanwhile, Jean-Philippe Bertschy will succeed Romanzina as head of Swiss equity research, the firm said in a statement this week.
Bertschy, who has more than 20 years of expertise in the area of Swiss equity research, has spent over 12 years at Vontobel in the Swiss equity research team, where he focused on consumer and luxury goods.
Starting on 15 December 2022, Romanzina will take over the running of the Vontobel subsidiary Vontobel Swiss Wealth Advisors AG, which specialises in internationally-diversified wealth management for North American clients.
It is planned that Romanzina will also lead the new unit that will be created as a result of the legal and operational merger of Vontobel SFA and VSWA at the end of the first quarter of 2023. Jürgen Wegner, CEO of the former UBS Swiss Financial Advisers AG – today Vontobel SFA – will become deputy CEO of the newly merged unit, which is to also operate under the Vontobel SFA brand, the firm continued.
Vontobel completed its acquisition of UBS Swiss Financial Advisers AG on 1 August 2022. With this transaction, Vontobel has strengthened its platform providing clients with a global investment approach and geographic diversification, the firm said.
With the assets under management of the two SEC-licensed entities – the former UBS and now Vontobel SFA (with assets under management of around SFr6.0 billion ($6.4 billion) and VSWA) – Vontobel has become the largest Swiss-domiciled wealth manager for US clients seeking an account in Switzerland for diversification purposes, the firm added. The combined assets under management more than doubled to around SFr10 billion as a result of the transaction.
The investment firm Vontobel and UBS have also agreed that in the future, UBS advisors across all US states will continue to refer clients seeking tailored investment solutions in a Swiss-based environment exclusively to their partner Vontobel SFA.
Jacqueline Hess, who played a key role in the transaction in her capacity as CEO of VSWA, has decided to hand over operational responsibility for the wealth management business with North American clients and to join the board of directors of the new SFA as vice chair, the firm said.
“I am delighted that Peter Romanzina is taking over the leadership of VSWA. Peter is a proven expert with many years of experience in working directly with discerning investment clients at Vontobel, Kepler and Credit Suisse First Boston, among other financial institutions. As the former head of Vontobel Brokerage, he also has experience in leading a US-regulated business,” Georg Schubiger, chairman of the board of VSWA and of Vontobel SFA and head of wealth management Vontobel, said.
“Peter Romanzina and Jürgen Wegner and their teams are committed to offering our North American clients the best possible advice regarding the regional diversification of their assets. Jürgen Wegner, who has very successfully led his team for around six years and played an instrumental role in the transaction and its successful execution, will place a particular emphasis on the collaboration with UBS advisors in the US to ensure continuity,” he continued.
“I would like to thank Jacqueline Hess for her enormous commitment during a key growth phase for the business with North American wealth management clients seeking an account in Switzerland for diversification purposes. I look forward to continuing to work with Jacqueline Hess when she becomes a member of the board of directors, as well as with Peter Romanzina and Jürgen Wegner, as we further expand our business with North American wealth management clients,” he said.