Luca Gabriele Trabattoni is our Sales Manager of the Month. Luca is a Senior Managing Director, Country Head of Italy and Mediterranean countries in UBP since 2011. Before joining the Geneva-based group, he was Senior Sales Manager at Pictet since 2002. Previously he also worked in JP Morgan Fleming Asset Management as Relationship Manager and in Bnl Fondi Immobiliari as Head of Sales for the Real Estate funds. Trabattoni also worked in the team dedicated to issues on the primary market at Aletti & C. and held the position of broker for Studio Agente di Cambio Giuseppe Vizzini after having been private banker and financial advisor for Finanza Europa SIM. Trabattoni began his career in the family business which was active in the production and marketing of semi-finished wood products. Luca has a degree in Economics and Commerce with a specialization in business management and administration. He is registered in the Register of Financial Advisors and member of AIAF the Italian Financial Analysts Society.
1. What reasons led you to dedicate yourself to the financial sector? What career path would you have chosen if not this one?
I have always been interested in stock exchanges and in financial sector. Growing up, the passion has increased, therefore I decided to study finance. In alternative I would have kept working for my family business, active in the woodworking sector
2. What sustains your drive within the industry? As we can see from your LinkedIn, you have been doing Sales since 2000, why this specific field of Asset Management?
I have been working in the sector for about thirty years. I started in the distribution of financial products in the private banking segment. At the beginning I covered different roles, working as a portfolio manager, in the investment banking and in the real estate. I entered in the asset management in 2000. All this gave me the chance to see the different aspects of the industry. I have always been passionate in creating strong relationships with customers. Listening and understanding their needs and finding suitable solutions is at the same time the most challenging and fascinating part of my job.
3. What is the most important quality of a Sales Manager? What advice would you give young professionals aspiring to build a career in Sales?
Being a sales manager is not about the sales but really about the people. And as any manager I believe several skills are required such as bringing consistency in the effort, sustaining the team’s mood in difficult times, ensuring the proper knowledge build up. The aspiration is to raise talents which are driven, highly skilled and consistent. In my experience this produces the long-term results a well-established firm seeks to have. Most of the juniors tend to focus on slight discrepancies in the package they are offered. I would suggest focusing instead on what the firm has to offer over the long-term focusing on what can help them to grow and build knowledge. The quality of the people they will be working with, who will be coaching them, and the quality of the products it offers will drive their success much more than anything else.
4. What’s your biggest challenge as a Country Head? Any crucial change in your role since COVID-19 changed the way we conduct business?
Our activity is centered on people. We interact with them, we meet them, we learn to know their needs and we try to answer to them. COVID-19 has forced us to move into an entirely new way of accessing our clients. The challenge is to keep a constant interaction through new tools available today.
5. What do you think will be the next disruptive elements in the asset management industry?
People are increasingly aware of the challenges the world is facing – like climate change, pollution and rising inequalities -. The ongoing pandemic has been only exacerbating the sense of emergency. At UBP, we are very excited and have invested a lot of resources in impact investing, which aims to generate a measurable social or environmental impact alongside a financial return. Companies which contribute to solve the social and environmental challenges should experience faster growth, fewer regulatory problems and superior profitability. Impact investing has been rapidly gaining both credibility and popularity with investors. According to the Global Impact Investing Network, the market which doubled in 2018, continued its solid growth in 2019, reaching USD 715 billion globally by the end of the year. This growth shows the beginning of a shift of preferences toward impact investing, but this journey just started, and this is our duty to engage with our clients and to make them aware about the benefits of impact investing.
6. Could you highlight any topic on which investors should focus on the long term?
Green taxonomy and the EU’s Green Deal prompted investors to pay more attention to sustainability. In the long term, investors will overcome the logic of the sole financial returns and will aim to generate a measurable social and environmental impact. The focus is on innovative companies with high growth potential and committed to lead to a positive and measurable change, in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. These have the potential to position themselves for sustained growth over the long term. Portfolios in the coming years could allocate more capital to assets with a high level of sustainability. Impact Investing will not be a trend but a new investment model where investors find good performance. In terms of opportunities, tech and fintech, energy transition and smart data will offer new opportunities in addition to private markets solutions that will find more space in the traditional portfolios.
7. Which assets do you think will perform best in 2021 considering the current market situations? Which assets are performing well under stress scenarios?
With good news on the efficient vaccines, we could think of a return in performance for those asset classes that lagged with the outbreak of the pandemic. In particular, the value stocks, which should no longer be considered in a purely defensive perspective. We will see strong sector rotation, the first signs of which are already starting to emerge with the first news on vaccines. Millennials and investors in general are increasingly focused on technology and sustainability. For 2021 we expect Equities to remain the most attractive asset class. As growth will remain scarce in a zero-rate environment, Growth-oriented companies (Technology, Consumer and Healthcare) are expected to continue outperforming in the long run. On the bond side we will continue to favour financial credit bonds for the interesting risk reward profile. The good growth perspective and the COVID-19 challenge apparently under control will be a key success driver also for EM investments driven by Energy transition and impact investing.