STEP 60 seconds interview with Xavier Isaac
Xavier Isaac TEP is CEO of Accuro, Geneva.
What does your firm or employer do, and what is your role there?
Accuro is a multi-jurisdictional Trust and Family Office business, with the aim of caring for and protecting families and their wealth for the long term. I am the CEO.
What is the most important thing STEP does, in your opinion?
Education You are one of the judges at this year’s Private Client Awards in November.
What led you to get involved?
Accuro is a previous winner. Last year we were awarded Trust Company of the Year (midsize firm), and I got involved after that. What do you think makes a good Private Client Awards submission? One that’s punchy and to the point, and illustrated by facts, figures and few examples.
What do you most like about your job?
I value the people side of it as well as its diversity and unpredictability. This requires constant adaptation and learning. We had a successful management buy-out last year, which enables us to take a long-term view on how, and with whom to build the business, for the benefit of our colleagues and clients.
What would you say to a young person thinking of a career in this industry?
People will continue to need wills, and taxes and regulations will continue to develop, and make the environment for international families even more complex. Global studies show the international high-net-worth population is set to grow, with USD100 trillion projected wealth for 2025.
Which sectors are likely to see the strongest future growth, do you think?
Family and business governance, together with the structuring that goes with it, in particular for new wealth owners of high growth companies (like social media and technology) and next generation of entrepreneurs.
What about jurisdictions?
I note a flight to quality, meaning stable and reputable jurisdictions. Typically well-regulated international financial centres with a broad and multi-cultural talent pool, strong infrastructure and both depth and breadth of private wealth services should prevail. I am concerned for the future of those jurisdictions that do no not meet these requirements.
What trends do you see in the global private wealth sector at the moment?
I envisage more trust company consolidation, a buyers’ bias towards fund and corporate services, a worrying race to the bottom on fees, fast-paced introduction of new regulations, and much competition for talent.
What do you feel are the main challenges facing your organisation at the moment, and how will you deal with them?
The work resulting from transparency and regulations, coupled with downward pricing pressures and the increased complexity of our activities, are currently our main challenges. We will deal with them through investing in new technology to automate processes and improve efficiency. We recently launched the Accuro Academy, a formal learning academy to deliver quality and relevant development to every employee. This is delivered under the guidance of a specialist organisational development company, and provides continuous development of both technical and interpersonal skills.
Which social media channels do you use and why?
LinkedIn, because it provides us the best value for time and money.
- The STEP Private Client Awards 2018/19 take place on 7 Nov.
Xavier Isaac TEP is CEO of Accuro, the award winning multi-jurisdictional Trust & Family Office business. He is a member of STEP and a regular speaker at STEP conferences. Xavier has served on the Panel of Experts for the STEP Private Client Awards on several occasions.
Published in STEP Journal, 15 October 2018