Keeping humbleness at the heart of a global provider.

The Apex Group may have become one of the top global financial services providers, but it has not lost the sense of humbleness that was part of its founder’s vision way back in 2003. The Country Head for Malta, Paulianne Nwoko, explains more about what lies at the company’s heart.

Photo – Ms. Paulianne Nwoko, Country Head, Apex Group

  • For those who don’t know your company, can you provide some background?

 Our founder and CEO, Peter Hughes, set up Apex Fund Services in Bermuda in 2003, having identified a gap in the market for small and medium sized asset managers that were looking for independent fund administration services. Peter always had a vision to grow Apex Group in as many jurisdictions as possible to make sure we are near to our clients, offering a global reach with local presence. From day one Apex Group started expanding its geographical footprint. The Malta office was established in 2008, by this time Apex Group was already present in 11 jurisdictions. Growth has always been part of who we are; it is amazing to see what the Group has reached to date, now in 35 countries with over 10,000 employees.

While we have grown to be one of the top global financial services providers, we kept a certain humbleness in the way we operate that still resonates our founder’s vision; we want to make sure we lead the way, giving our clients the best and most complete service offering in all jurisdictions.

  •  Can you share a little-known fact about your company?

 Apex Group’s company values really set us apart: ‘We care’, ‘We promote respect’, ‘We are Exceptional’ and ‘We drive growth’. These values were established through a team exercise performed during an annual offsite for Apex Group’s global leaders, which was actually held in Malta that year. Being part of this process made me feel more invested in and proud of our company values. Our values are really the way we operate in every aspect of our working lives.

  • What are you currently working on and what are your company’s plans and strategic priorities for the coming years?

 Apex Group has gone through accelerated growth in the past year, especially with the closing of a number of acquisitions, so our focus this year is to come together as one strong brand. We have the largest product suite within the industry so making sure we are out there and meeting as many of our clients and stakeholders as possible is also our target, so that the industry fully understands the power of our single source solution.

  •  Are there any projects/achievements of your company that you are exceptionally proud of?

 I am very proud of the commitment Apex has taken to ensure our corporate social responsibility is not only a statistical exercise but that we are making an effective change that affects our people, society and the planet. During the past couple of years Apex Group has, among other initiatives, partnered with Eden Reforestation Projects, whereby we are planting trees for every new client contract and for every employee that reaches 5-year tenure, this led to over 200,000 trees being planted to date!

Apex Group has also made a commitment to offset its carbon emission not just on an annual basis, but for all historic carbon emissions in the years since we were founded in 2003. Late last year, Apex Group also launched the Apex Foundation, a not-for-profit entity set up to support charities and initiatives involved in conservation and preservation of the environment, women’s empowerment, education and social mobility among others.

Another project, I was proud and honoured to participate in was the launch of our Women Accelerator Programme, a programme that will help drive more female leaders within the Group.

  •  What in your opinion makes Malta an effective jurisdiction to set up a business?

 Malta ticks many boxes for any business to operate successfully: English-speaking, highly qualified and hardworking workforce, an EU member, over 80 double-taxation treaties in place, and easily reachable from all major airports. Malta is a small country with, however, a very interesting history, rich culture and a great place to be any time of the year with our warm climate.

When it comes to financial services in particular, Malta has built a great network of service providers, from legal firms, to accounting and audit firms, to fund administrators, fund managers and advisors. As a result, the levels of expertise and service together with our humbleness as a small jurisdiction works very well for both start-ups but also established firms looking to branch out within the EU.

  •  What kind of people/companies in the financial services community would you want to connect with?

 Building strong relationships with different stakeholders is a very important aspect to run a business successfully. Our connections are not limited to our clients but building relationships with the full network and ecosystem that services our clients – like legal firms, audit firms, banks and brokers – to ensure that we are delivering the best possible service to our clients.

BIO:

Paulianne Nwoko is Country Head, Malta at global financial services provider Apex Group. Paulianne has close to two decades of experience in financial services focused on accounting, fund administration, compliance and AML. Paulianne is an advocate for improving diversity and inclusion in the financial services industry and beyond. Apex delivers an extensive range of services to asset managers, corporates, capital markets, private clients and family offices.

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