KBL European Private Bankers (KBL epb), headquartered in Luxembourg and operating in 50 cities in Europe, announced today the appointment of Peter Vandekerckhove as Group CEO and member of the Board of Directors, effective January 1, 2018, subject to regulatory approval.
Vandekerckhove – a leading figure in the Belgian banking sector who has more than three decades of experience, including at the most senior level – will replace Yves Stein, who will step down following a leadership transition to pursue professional opportunities elsewhere. Stein will remain a member of the Board of Directors of Merck Finck, KBL epb’s German subsidiary.
Since 2009, Vandekerckhove has overseen both the private and retail banking activities of Brussels-headquartered BNP Paribas Fortis in his capacity as CEO, Retail, Private & Enterprise Banking, and member of the Board. With over 10,000 staff, it is the largest division of that bank.
Vandekerckhove began his career in wealth management in 1992 as Managing Director at Pierson, Heldring & Pierson Belgium. He rose rapidly in the leadership of that bank (subsequently known as MeesPierson) – first as CEO, Belgium, and then Group CEO, based in the Netherlands and overseeing 3,000 staff in 15 countries.
Following the acquisition of MeesPierson by Fortis in 1996, he joined the Management Committee of Fortis Private Banking. He was then named CEO, Fortis Retail Banking Belgium, overseeing the operations of the country’s largest retail bank.
Vandekerckhove is currently a board member at a number of leading organizations, including BNP Paribas Asset Management, AG Insurance and the Belgian Financial Sector Federation.
Jan Maarten de Jong, Chairman of the Board of Directors of KBL epb, said: “We look forward to welcoming Peter Vandekerckhove to KBL epb, where he will apply his proven leadership skills to bring out the best in the group’s people. We are confident that he will build upon the major accomplishments achieved during Yves Stein’s distinguished tenure.
“The Board would like to thank Yves for his tireless dedication to the KBL epb group over the past five years, and wishes him every success in his future pursuits,” he said.
Acknowledging Stein’s significant contribution, George Nasra, CEO of Precision Capital, said: “During a period marked by extremely challenging external conditions, Yves led the profoundly positive transformation of KBL epb – including executing landmark acquisitions, major IT projects and a robust commercial growth strategy. Under his stewardship and thanks to his personal commitment, the KBL epb group is today strongly positioned for continued success in the years to come.
“We firmly believe that Peter Vandekerckhove has the right combination of skills and experience to accelerate this growth story,” Nasra said. “Precision Capital is committed to providing the long-term support required for KBL epb to realize its full promise.”
Vandekerckhove said: “KBL epb is an organization on the move, with a unique position in the highly competitive European wealth management industry and a rich heritage in Luxembourg. As a network of leading local private banks – including strong domestic brands such as Puilaetco Dewaay in Belgium, Merck Finck in Germany, InsingerGilissen in the Netherlands and Brown Shipley in the UK, as well as operations in France, Monaco and Spain – the group offers its clients and staff opportunities found nowhere else.
“I am excited about joining KBL epb in the new year,” he said. “In this industry where personalized service is everything, I will dedicate my energy to earning the trust of my new colleagues and the group’s valued clients.”
Stein concluded: “As KBL epb continues to further strengthen its core markets and focus ever more sharply on its strategic priorities, our people can look to the future with deep-rooted confidence.
“I am grateful to our shareholder and the Board of Directors for the chance to have led KBL epb at an inflection point in its decades-long growth journey,” he said. “Most of all, I would like to thank our employees for their hard work and every client who places their faith in KBL epb, from one generation to the next.”
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