After Hong Kong last year, it was the turn of Societe Generale’s Singapore site to celebrate its thirtieth anniversary. Organised on Thursday October 22 at the Tanah Merah Country Golf Club, the event was based around a golf contest, of course, but also wine-tasting with Burgundy wine. The event was much appreciated by the hundred or so guests, who were welcomed by De Doan Tran, Head of the Asia–Pacific zone for the Group, and Maurice Nhan, Chief Country Officer in Singapore.
Opened just after Hong Kong and Tokyo, this was thus the Group’s third office to open in Asia. “Thirty years ago, it was first and foremost a wholesale bank whose aim was to serve clients in France”, explains Maurice Nhan. “Obviously, our activities have evolved as Societe Generale has evolved, and today we focus much more on investment banking.” There are substantial prospects for the Group in Singapore. The private banking industry will be looking to develop more transparent investment alternatives. And of course the Southeast Asian port will continue to be a major commodities trading hub.
Close to 600 staff work for Societe Generale in Singapore, for SG CIB or PRIV, but also for Newedge and Amundi. Three of these staff give their accounts below:
Denise-Kin-Choo Tan, who joined Societe Generale Singapore in September 1989, is currently Managing Director Natural Resources, Trade & Commodity Financing.
“I look back on my last twenty years with SG with satisfaction and pride. SG has not only given me a job but opportunities to grow and find fulfilment. From my vantage perspective in corporate banking and commodity financing, SG has enabled me to partake of the tremendous growth and change in delivery channels and instruments that SG as an international bank is able to offer to our clients, whose growing sophistication and needs have been a challenge to meet and satisfy. I am thankful to SG for all that has been and look forward to contributing to what will be.”
Eric Saux is working with Société Générale in Singapore for the last seven years and is Head of commodity and trading in Asia.
“For short-term commodity financing, Singapore is a real hub; it’s the place to be in Asia. Singapore is where you’ll find traders in Asian oil. It also has numerous refineries, so there is a lot of storage capacity. And Singapore is on the route between the Middle East and China, the region’s largest purchaser of oil and gas. This automatically makes it a nerve centre for my activity.”
Yahya Bin Rais has been part of Societe Generale Singapore since the start, as he joined the company on February 1, 1979 as a driver.
"SG has been part of my life. I spent 30 years in SG and still am, from my bachelor time till now (a grandfather) and I would like to thank SG and hope to continue my service here."