People digest: UOB, Lendlease, Knight Frank make key hires

Singapore’s UOB has appointed Eric Lim as its first chief sustainability officer, Australia-based property group Lendlease has announced the appointment of Justin Gabbani as the group’s Asia CEO, while Knight Frank Asia-Pacific has appointed Christine Li as head of research, Asia-Pacific, based in Singapore.

UOB appoints chief sustainability officer

United Overseas Bank has appointed Eric Lim as its first chief sustainability officer (CSO), according to an announcement.

In his new role, Lim will lead a dedicated corporate sustainability office which will focus on achieving the bank’s sustainability objectives of helping businesses advance responsibly, steering consumer wealth to sustainable investments, and fostering social inclusiveness and environmental well-being.

The CSO will report directly to Wee Ee Cheong, deputy chairman and CEO, UOB. Lim will also join the bank’s management committee, chaired by the bank’s CEO and comprises the bank’s most senior leaders from across the region.

The team will develop and monitor the key performance indicators of UOB’s strategic sustainability goals, including its carbon footprint targets.

Lim is also the chairperson of UOB’s Group Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Committee. The ESG committee is responsible for reviewing the bank’s material ESG topics, identifying relevant risks and opportunities, and monitoring the progress of sustainability-related programmes and initiatives.

Lim’s current role is head of group finance, where he oversees financial strategy, capital management, regulatory and financial reporting, tax management, business finance and performance management. Prior to UOB, Lim was managing director and head of wholesale banking finance, Singapore and Southeast Asia at a multinational bank.

Australia’s Lendlease appoints new Asia CEO

Australia-headquartered property group Lendlease announced on Thursday the appointment of Justin Gabbani as the group’s Asia CEO, to be based in Singapore, as well as Deborah Yates as its chief people officer, based in Sydney.

The appointment of Gabbani as Asia CEO follows current Asia CEO, Tony Lombardo, being appointed to the role of group CEO designate in February, Lendlease said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Yates’s appointment as chief people officer follows the resignation of group head of people & culture Alex Christie.

Gabbani joined Lendlease in 2003 and most recently held the role of CFO, Asia. Prior to this role, he was head of investment & capital markets (Asia and Europe) responsible for investments, capital raising, investor relations, product development, and research across both Asia and Europe. Gabbani will commence his new role on June 1. A selection process is underway for his successor.

Yates joins Lendlease as the group’s chief people officer following a 25-year career working across all areas of human resources. In her current role as KPMG’s national managing partner for people and corporate affairs, she has led its people strategy with a particular focus on creating a mentally healthy culture that empowers people to successfully execute the organisation’s strategy. Prior to joining KPMG, she was Chief HR Officer at Reckitt Benckiser.  She commences her new role at Lendlease on July 1.

Knight Frank appoints head of research

Knight Frank Asia-Pacific has appointed Christine Li as head of research, Asia-Pacific, based in Singapore.

In this role, Li will oversee the research teams across the region in forecasting key trends and bringing quality insights to clients across office, industrial and residential sectors as well as specialist asset classes such as student accommodation, multi-family, and data centres.

Li has over fifteen years of experience delivering research and strategic analysis for both commercial and residential real estate markets.

She will be joining a wide-reaching international network of researchers across the group including UK-based experts Liam Bailey, Will Matthews, Dr Lee Elliott, Andrew Shirley, and Kate Everett-Allen, and local teams in more than 14 markets across the region.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.