MENA Asset Management and Trading Summit

Conrad, Dubai, UAE

06 Nov 2019


Now in its 10th year, Global Investor’s MENA Asset Management and Trading Summit will be held at Dubai’s Conrad Hotel on November 6. Featuring expert panellists from across the region and beyond, the summit will debate the hottest topics in the industry right now.


The conference also provides a unique marketing platform to the industry, giving the opportunity to reach the most influential participants in derivatives. 

For information on sponsorship opportunities please contact Hanna DeBank 

If you have any questions about the event please contact Yasmin Okolo at 


08:00 Registration and Networking

09:00 MENA asset management outlook – how to prosper in volatile times

Gulf stock markets enjoyed an upbeat start to 2019 only for steep declines in May to wipe out much of these gains. A renewed rally on some bourses has buoyed sentiment, but a prolonged bull-run seems unlikely amid a stuttering regional economy.

  • Has Gulf markets’ haphazard performance made regional asset management services a tougher sell?
  • Or does the difficult market environment make the services of skilled asset managers all the more essential for regional wealthy and institutional investors? Are individual investors becoming warier of investing directly themselves?
  • Are Gulf markets oversold? Where is the most value to be found?
  • DIFC and ADGM are the Gulf’s two leading financial centres. What is this duo doing to support the asset management sector?
  • In the likes of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, asset managers have deployed momentum strategies to profit from the huge inflows of foreign money due to emerging market upgrades and changes in EM index weightings, how much longer can this play last?
  • Is austerity over in Saudi and what does that mean for equities?
  • What further reforms would help boost Saudi bourse trading volumes?



09:45 Conventional asset managers face fintech conundrum

Automation in equity market trading began in the 1990s. Now, fintech-based financial advisors and wealth managers seem poised to take market share from conventional asset managers as well as bringing in new clients. Fintech firms claim their proprietary technology provides unparalleled, near-instant research and analysis across a variety of asset classes, including equities and fixed income, while their platforms can be tailored for retail, high net worth, and institutional investors.

  • Can active fund managers still provide investors with a competitive edge or will algorithms ultimately prevail?
  • How are MENA fund managers responding to the fintech threat and what more should they do?
  • Is fintech a friend or foe?
  • Could MENA asset managers use fintech tools to provide their clients with more opportunities to invest internationally?
  • Can technology help MENA asset managers diversify their product offerings?


10:30  Market Presentation - TBC


11:15  Coffee and Networking


12:00 Alternative asset classes for MENA investors

Diversification is an essential tenet of investment, and real estate has long been a favoured alternative asset class for MENA investors – retail, high-net-worth and institutional. As well as property, there are plenty other unconventional asset classes to consider.

  • What alternative assets are most in demand from MENA institutional and wealthy investors? And why?
  • Is interest from regional investors in these asset classes growing and why?
  • What are biggest challenges to increasing the regional AUM of alternative assets?
  • Real estate will always be a popular investment among regional investors, although Gulf property markets have broadly suffered a prolonged downturn. How does Gulf real estate compare with other emerging property markets?
  • Real estate industry players report an influx of consultants, lawyers and other experts from abroad to Saudi Arabia. What are the biggest opportunities in Saudi real estate and why?


12:45 Market Presentation – TBC


13:15 Lunch


14:15 Investing beyond MENA to boost returns

In an increasingly globalised, interconnected world, investors are less constrained by geographical boundaries.

  • Where should MENA investors be putting their money to work outside the region?
  • What asset classes offer the most potential in the short to medium term?
  • How can MENA asset managers work with their international counterparts to help clients invest beyond the region?
  • How does the dollar’s prolonged strength against the likes of the pound and the euro affect international investment strategies for MENA asset managers?



15:00 Trading Saudi: Nasdaq Dubai launched in January 2019 futures on 12 of the largest Saudi listed firms and followed this with a Saudi
index futures in February while the Dubai Mercantile Exchange cut in July 2018 a deal with Aramco to become its crude oil pricing benchmark.

  • What role can the exchanges in the Gulf region play in offering access to the Saudi market?
  • How can the exchanges in the region work with the Saudis to boost trading across the region?
  • What are the key challenges in harmonising market structures across the different financial centres in the region?



15:45 Shariah Products: DGCX launched in March 2018 the first physically-backed Sharia-compliant gold contract, marking the latest launch
by a regional exchange.

  • What is the outlook for the trading of Sharia-compliant contracts?
  • What changes need to be made to ensure greater traction in the trading of Sharia-compliant products?
  • What are some of the new Sharia-compliant products that exchanges should look to list?



16:30 Close of Conference and Networking Drinks

Silver Sponsor

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Conrad Dubai
Sheikh Zayed Road, 308 Road, 49,