London-based direct lender Pemberton has expanded into the Middle East with the opening of a Dubai office.
The new office will be led by former BlackRock managing director and head of Middle East and Africa, Anis Ghamgui, and will seek to build on its existing relationships with investors in the region.
Pemberton said it believes it is important to have a strong local presence to understand investors’ needs and develop better solutions for clients.
Ghamgui has two decades’ experience in business development. He spent two years as head of the institutional client business for the MENA region at BlackRock where he was responsible for all aspects of business management and strategic leadership in the region. He also spent six years as head of institutional sales for MENA and central East Asia at Natixis Global Asset Management and has held positions at Morgan Stanley and S&P.
“The Middle Eastern and African markets are increasing their exposure to private debt strategies, often reallocating from fixed income or alternatives,” said Ghumgui. “Private debt is emerging as a core part in the strategic asset allocation for major institutional investors, both for the yield opportunities it provides and for the returns on a risk adjusted basis, compared to other asset classes.”
Symon Drake-Brockman, managing partner at Pemberton, said: “As a business we have always believed in the importance of local relationships, so opening an office in Dubai felt like a logical next step. The region is home to many of the world’s leading investors and if we want to truly understand their needs, we should be closer to them.”
Pemberton said it plans to further increase its presence in the Middle East in the coming years by employing local talent with a reputation for building long-term partnerships.