About 400 wealthy families are operating offices out of Singapore: trade minister

Singapore’s central business district. Photo: Peter Nguyen
Singapore’s central business district. Photo: Peter Nguyen

About 400 ultra-rich families have been operating offices out of Singapore as of the end of last year to manage their wealth and investments, according to Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing. 

Chan was responding to a parliamentary question in a written answer that was released last night, attributing the rise in single-family offices to Singapore’s stability, competitive business environment, talent in the local wealth management industry, as well as investment opportunities. 

The families of Google co-founder Sergey Brin, as well as those of American billionaire Ray Dalio, were among the latest to set up offices in Singapore, which is also famous for its low taxes and incentives for the rich. 

“[Monetary Authority of Singapore] estimates that there are about 400 Single Family Offices (“SFOs”) operating in Singapore as at end-2020. These SFOs were established in Singapore due to our stability, competitive business environment, the availability of talent from our wealth management industry as well as the breadth and depth of investment opportunities that we offer as an international financial centre,” Chan wrote in his written reply to a parliamentary question posed by Tampines MP Desmond Choo. 

A family office is a privately held company set up to manage the investment and wealth of a family with multimillion-dollar assets. According to Chan, these offices also offer indirect employment opportunities for when they work with external finance and tax and legal professionals, as well as provide capital for various local startups or investment companies funding local businesses. 

“Many principals of these family offices are owners of successful businesses too and may be able to provide guidance to the companies they invest in,” he added.

Brin’s family office, Bayshore Global Management, reportedly set up its Singapore branch late last year while reports that Bridgewater Associates founder Dalio was opening his family office came out in November. 

Brin, 47, is worth US$94.5 billion according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index while Dalio, 71, is worth US$17 billion. Bloomberg previously estimated that about 200 single-family offices could be managing assets worth US$20 billion in Singapore as of October. 

Other stories:

Over 2 million Singaporean adults yet to redeem tourist vouchers: trade minister

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