From one of the oldest noble families in Europe to a leading private banking and asset management group, innovation and adaptability is key to the enduring success of the Princely House Of Liechtenstein.
Since the 16th Century, the Princely Family of Liechtenstein have displayed a forward-thinking approach to business, economics and social care that has shaped the German-speaking principality into a pioneering powerhouse.
The family-owned LGT Group is continuing to live up to the legacy of its forebears with a mantra of responsible stewardship and a typically progressive attitude to investment.
With degrees in law and business administration from the University of Zurich, and a master’s in e-business development from the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya in Barcelona, H.S.H. Prince Hubertus von und zu Liechtenstein is the very model of the innovating mindset that has driven the Princely House Of Liechtenstein to generations of success.
In an exclusive interview, the cousin of the reigning Prince Hans Adam II and member of LGT’s board of directors, talks to Campden FB about entrepreneurial spirit, developing a diverse portfolio and flying the flag for his home.
Vaduz Castle, the official and primary residency of H.S.H. Prince Hans Adam II and his family
Where in the world are you right now?
In Zurich, Switzerland, working at my desk.
Where would you rather be right now?
I am perfectly fine where I am right now.
Can you tell us a little about the history of the LGT?
LGT looks back on a history of more than 100 years. In 1930, shortly after the outbreak of the global economic crisis, my family took it over as a small banking institution. My ancestors have always had a very progressive attitude and therefore invested with conviction in the ongoing optimisation of processes and solutions and developed new business areas with foresight. With long-term thinking and action, a careful weighing of opportunities and risks, and the great commitment of a competent team, we have succeeded in turning the small, regional institution into the world's largest private banking and asset management group. Today, LGT has more than 4,100 employees working in over 20 locations.
“I bring in the experience and expertise on how the Princely Family has managed to preserve its wealth over generations.”
What’s your role in the organisation?
As a member of the Princely Family of Liechtenstein and member of the Board of Trustees of LGT Group, I have various legal and organisational obligations and I am intensively involved in the topic of family governance. I bring in the experience and expertise on how the Princely Family has managed to preserve its wealth over generations.
Your family has long displayed an entrepreneurial spirit, would you say that was a major contributing factor to the LGT and the Princely House’s business success?
Without a doubt. Our family's entrepreneurial spirit has always been a hallmark of LGT. Even my ancestors consciously combined tradition and consistency with forward-looking thinking and action. In all our activities, we strive to question the status quo, be open to new paths and pursue them with conviction. I am certain that this is a decisive pillar of LGT's success and also shapes our many other entrepreneurial activities in the fields of art, science and welfare.
What can LGT offer to private ultra-high-net-worth families?
Very wealthy families rely on products, services and competencies that go beyond traditional private banking. The origin and basis of today's wealth sometimes go back many generations. From widely branched families to domiciles in different countries: It is not uncommon that the living conditions of these clients are extremely complex. As a banking partner, we know and understand the challenges involved and are globally positioned. This gives us the opportunity, for example, to provide personal support to a client at their secondary residence. We also have extensive expertise in family governance and philanthropy, as well as specialised skills in alternative investment segments. All this is of great importance for very wealthy clients today.
H.S.H. Prince Hubertus von und zu Liechtenstein
What would you say is the secret to LGT’s long-running success?
In my opinion there is not one secret. Rather, there are several strong cornerstones on which our success is based. The private ownership structure with a long-standing tradition allows a high level of organisational and financial stability as well as a long-term focus. This is in line with our maxim of offering LGT's clients long-term added value. We think and act in an entrepreneurial and forward-looking manner in order to continually develop innovative solutions. Also, we take responsibility for the environment and society and pursue a holistic approach. In this way, we focus not only on our operating business, but also our investment activities and our advisory services on sustainability. I am convinced that this, combined with our differentiated investment expertise and high-quality, individualised client service, is what makes us successful.
Liechtenstein is ranked second in the world by gross domestic product (GDP), just behind Monaco, how do you account for this statistic?
The Liechtenstein financial center offers numerous attractive advantages that set it apart from many other countries. For example, it has an extremely stable social, legal and economic system and has no national debt. There is free access to the EU's internal market and its close ties with Switzerland and EEA membership make Liechtenstein the link between two economic areas. In addition, short decision-making channels ensure a high degree of agility and promote innovation in the country. It is therefore not surprising that Liechtenstein is at the forefront of entrepreneurship. In addition to the innovative financial sector, the strong industrial sector and a large number of commercial enterprises also characterize Liechtenstein as a business location.
“We invest in enterprises that complement our portfolio in a meaningful way and enable synergies.”
Your family has a very wide portfolio – from agriculture to alternative energies – what influences your own investment decisions?
In our decisions, we always pursue a long-term, internationally oriented investment strategy and focus on the core sectors that we know and understand. We invest in enterprises that complement our portfolio in a meaningful way and enable synergies: Innovative and high-growth companies that are managed sustainably not only from an economic perspective, but also from a social and ecological one.
What does a good working day look like for you?
A good working day can look very different. For me, it is crucial that at the end of the day I feel I have used my time effectively and in a meaningful way.
LGT is a leading international private banking and asset management group
What do you do in your downtime for fun?
I spend time with my wife and son and also with good friends. Besides that, I really like doing sports.
What has been your biggest career challenge to date?
So far, every phase of my life or career has had its own “Big” challenges. In this respect, I see life as a challenging journey that has to be mastered.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
See setbacks as part of a learning process. And stop worrying too much!