In a continued effort by private banks to distinguish themselves and offer bespoke services, UBS announced last week that it has hired David Hayward Evans as head of philanthropy and values-based investing in Asia-Pacific.
Evans will be based in Singapore and joins Christina Tung and Jenny Santi, who both have been instrumental in developing UBS’s philanthropy services in Hong Kong and Singapore.
The appointment comes as UBS strengthens its offering to clients who consider themselves “responsible investors” in Asia — people who want to do the right thing with their money. UBS has focused particularly in new areas such as “impact investing” for social and environmental benefit. Evans will hold a dual role and also oversee all family services activities in Singapore.
Ultra-high-net-worth individuals have engaged in philanthropy for centuries. In recent years, famous businessmen, such as Microsoft founder Bill Gates and hedge fund financier George Soros, have re-inspired business leaders to give back. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation alone has made total grant commitments since inception in 1994 of $25.3 billion.
At the same time, private banks have educated clients about the tax and trust benefits of well-structured gifts — and increasingly banks recognise that offering these services is a way to woo clients.
UBS is already active in philanthropy advisory through its dedicated philanthropy and values-based investing team. It has more than 30 in-house specialists who cater globally to all aspects of philanthropy, strategic charitable giving as well as investing with social impact in a “one-stop” professional approach.
Previously, Evans acted as manager for the private sector and non-government donors at the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which is billed as the world’s biggest health-financing instrument, attached to the UN. Through major partnerships such as Product Red, founded by U2’s Bono, Evans and his team raised more than $250 million for health programmes in the developing world during the past three years.
Evans also managed public-private partnerships for public diplomacy campaigns undertaken by the British government in China and India. He has a background in the media, particularly Asia, having led international development at the Paley Centre for Media in New York.