News - 19th March 2016 - (Arabian Business)
A former group CEO of Dubai's biggest bank has been hired by a student accommodation provider which has recently launched its first project in the Middle East.
Former Emirates NBD chief Rick Pudner, who also spent 25 year in senior roles at HSBC, is joining GSA Group as non-executive director, a statement said.
Pudner will provide strategic advice and support as GSA continues its global expansion while his significant global relationships with banks, institutional investors, sovereign wealth funds and private investors will support the GSA investment management platform, the statement added.
Pudner became group CEO of Emirates NBD after successfully leading the merger of Emirates Bank with the National Bank of Dubai.
Pudner said: "GSA Group is one of the leaders in an exciting and growing global sector. The management team pioneered the development of student accommodation, its operational direction and created the asset class for investors. I am looking forward to helping GSA realise its growth ambitions."
GSA Group funds, operates and manages student communities across three continents, with the aim of establishing a presence in major university cities worldwide.
This year, GSA opened the first off-campus dedicated student accommodation facility in Dubai, Uninest Student Residences at Dubailand, marking the group's entry into the Middle East.
Nicholas Porter, executive chairman of GSA Group said: "Rick's wealth of knowledge and expertise will be a huge asset to us and we're delighted to have him join GSA.
"We are at the forefront of significant student accommodation opportunities on a global level and Rick will help us realise our growth ambitions, while focusing on key areas of our Investment Management business such as investment analysis, governance and banking relationships."
Pudner, 59, is based in Dubai, and is also a board member of Genpharm, Elysium Capital Partners and Beehive DMCC.
GSA has nine offices around the world in Dublin, Bristol, London, Frankfurt, Dubai, Hong Kong, Beijing, Tokyo and Sydney.