Chief Executive Officer of Northern Trust’s EU Bank in Luxembourg
Country Head of Northern Trust’s Luxembourg Global Fund Services business
CELEBRATING A NEW CAREER
IN JANUARY 2021 STEVE DAVID ASSUMED THE ROLE OF CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER OF NORTHERN TRUST’S LUXEMBOURG-HEADQUARTERED BANK, NORTHERN TRUST GLOBAL SERVICES SE. THIS IS IN ADDITION TO HIS RESPONSIBILITIES AS COUNTRY HEAD OF NORTHERN TRUST’S LUXEMBOURG GLOBAL FUND SERVICES BUSINESS. DECISION MAKERS REFLECTS ON STEVE’S CAREER JOURNEY, WHICH STARTED AS AN AUDIT TRAINEE 27 YEARS AGO.
Born in Bettembourg, Steve studied economics and finance at the Institut Catholique des Hautes Études Commerciales in Brussels, and in 1994 became an audit trainee at Price Waterhouse in Luxembourg (now PwC). He left four years later to join Chase Manhattan Bank Luxembourg S.A., where he worked in the Quality Assurance and Compliance/Fiduciary departments. In 2000, he took on the position of Compliance Officer at IKANO Advisory Management S.A., a Luxembourg fund management company. “It was important for my career because I was responsible for creating a function from scratch,” Steve says now, “helping me build a strong knowledge of the fund compliance world.”
Joining Northern Trust
In 2004 Northern Trust opened an office in Luxembourg as part of a client-led initiative, resulting in the establishment of Europe’s first tax-transparent pooling investment vehicle. Steve applied for a role and became Northern Trust’s second hire in the Grand Duchy, as Head of Risk and Control as well as Conducting Officer in the group’s Luxembourg Management Company. He became Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer of the Northern Trust Luxembourg Management Company S.A in 2009. He served as Country Head for Northern Trust in Luxembourg between 2012 and April March 2019, and as Chief Operating Officer for Northern Trust Global Services SE prior to assuming his new responsibilities.
Northern Trust established its new EU bank in Luxembourg in March 2019, whilst retaining its EMEA regional headquarters in the UK. “The initiative underscores our strategic growth focus and growth strategy in Continental Europe. Clients have welcomed the opportunity to connect with our new banking headquarters in the EU, while offering linkage to our branch in the UK and other locations,” Steve says.
Reflections on the past 17 years and road ahead
Steve reflects: “From the outset we have built our reputation from listening to our clients’ needs and providing solutions for them. This has helped propel our growth to around 360 employees in Luxembourg supporting approximately 640 Luxembourg funds and providing a full range of asset servicing solutions. Another key milestone has been the acquisition of UBS Asset Management’s fund administration business in Luxembourg and Switzerland in 2017 resulting in additional presence and scale. We are now a top 10 administrator by assets under administration as ranked in the 2020 Monterey Insight Luxembourg Fund Report. 2020 marked yet another milestone as we combined our two Luxembourg offices by relocating to a new office space at Leudelange, south-western Luxembourg. . While the ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic mean we are yet to fully realise the benefits of the new physical location, it has been purpose built to meet the asset servicing needs of our clients including the enhanced focus on technology and digitisation.”
Can you highlight an important theme for the year ahead?
“In 2021 the Luxembourg funds industry will continue to apply the learning from the pandemic by accelerating the adoption of technology and digitisation to transform core asset servicing processes.
From a sector perspective, we continue to see significant potential for Luxembourg to expand its appeal as a jurisdiction for alternative investments alongside its reputation for UCITS funds.
With close to two decades of experience in Luxembourg offering asset administration, asset servicing and asset enhancement solutions, Northern Trust is well positioned to help our clients navigate these challenges and opportunities.”
Facts & Figures
Place of birth: Luxembourg
Languages: Luxembourgish, German, French, English, glimpse of Spanish
Hobbies: Sports, Art
Cities: Luxembourg, Paris, Tokyo (though I have never been there)
Restaurants: Kamakura, Celadon, Oishi (Paris), Matsuhisa (Munich)
Places: Munich, Paris, “Vieille-Ville” of Luxembourg
Books: Tintin, Enki Bilal, Yasunari Kawabata, Charles Bukowski
Music: Jazz-House, Jacques Brel, Leonard Cohen
Artwork: Helmut Newton, Araki, Giraud, Joerg Doering