UBS' Private Banking Guru Departs

UBS is losing the high-profile quirky executive it entrusted with seeing off digital rivals for wealthy clients, has learned.

Often spotted in shorts and colorful t-shirts, his long hair tied back into a messy bun, Dave Bruno was the opposite of a typical UBS private banker. UBS tasked him with its so-called wealth lab just over three years ago, to figure out how it could head off digital rivals as a new crop of younger clients emerged.

Now Bruno aka «SuperDave» is leaving UBS at the end of June after eight years, for a new job outside the Swiss bank, two sources told He is currently handing over and a search for his successor is ongoing, one of the people said.

Digital Rollouts

Bruno, formerly a Credit Suisse pay banker and a consultant, cut a colorful figure in fintech and start-up circles – not least for his series of videos deadlifting in his garage. He referred to his work as a «mission» at a company with $2 trillion dollars in assets, «surviving or dying».

As the public face of change, Bruno and his 12-person team are most closely identified with projects like an interactive dialogue tool UBS is testing with Amazon, or SmartWealth, a digital wealth manager the Swiss bank rolled out earlier this year.

Ynome Setback

He also drove UBS Safe, a digital document repository that UBS' bank in Switzerland rolled out.

Not everything Bruno touched led to success: one of his biggest projects, Ynome, a Trip Advisor-like site for financial providers, was quietly buried at the end of last year.

UBS explicitly thanked Bruno, who had reported to the operating chief of UBS' private bank Dirk Klee, for his contributions, one person said. Bruno didn't respond to a request by for comment.

His departure comes shortly after several other UBS heavyweights including London-based innovation lab head Alex Batlin as well as his boss, overall innovation chief Oliver Bussmann, left the bank last year.

Source: fines

© Nick Kalikajaros 2017