Financial Centres Of The World 2023: Focus On Malta
Malta may be one of the world's smallest countries, but it is also a vibrant financial hub where FinTech start-ups, fund managers, insurance firms, payment providers and family offices work in close proximity to one another. Despite our small size, we made the conscious decision to support a variety of financial activities and specialist segments, including a rich mix of international, regional and local institutions.
Asset management, insurance, banking, private wealth, capital markets and FinTech are the dominant forces of our finance industry. Moreover, aviation, yachting, maritime services, space finance and sustainable finance also play important roles as selective niches where Malta has built a specialist service offering tailored to the specific industry verticals. This diversity helps us to thrive and promotes cross-sector partnerships and cooperation among companies operating from Malta.
Malta's success in Financial Services in the last three decades has been marked by strong performance and foreign investment, adding some €1.2 billion in terms of Gross Value Added to Malta’s economy. The sector facilitates trade and investment and drives employment in the country, forming part of the island’s bedrock.
The FATF's placing of Malta on the greylist in 2021 rocked the industry, which has, in turn, reacted by working hard to remove the jurisdiction from such greylist in the record time of under a year. This difficult experience has resulted in a united movement, led by the Malta Financial Services Advisory Council and supported by FinanceMalta, to formulating a forward-looking strategy for the industry, identifying over 175 substantive initiatives which would refocus energy, investment and growth into this sector. This work represents a unique process: it was initiated by Government, with full and active participation from both the industry and the regulators. This will ensure that the strategy will be supported by all stakeholders through its full implementation.
Join this webinar to learn more about Malta's financial services strategy and find out how you can network with the leaders in this space at the Guildhall in London on the 4th December 2023.
George Vella is the chairman of FinanceMalta, a public-private partnership set up in 2007 to promote Malta’s financial centre. He has over 15 years experience in corporate and project finance, research and development, strategic and project management, starting his career in 1995 at PwC where he worked in assurance, advisory and risk management arms .
In 2001 he joined the Corinthia Group and fulfilled a number of roles both locally and abroad, including that of Finance Director at the Corinthia Grand Hotel Royal in Budapest and Corporate Finance Executive at the Corinthia Head Office. Tasks included business planning and budgeting processes, feasibility studies and acquisition bids, the implementation of a standard accounting package, raising of funds for project and corporate finance.
In 2005, he took on the role of Head of Corporate Strategy at APS Bank and was a member on the Bank’s risk management and credit committees.
At Grant Thornton, George and his team provide a variety of services including financial control, internal audit, evaluation services, assistance in the preparation of business plans, feasibility studies and cost benefit analyses, business valuations, assistance with mergers and acquisitions, project finance and corporate finance advisory services.
Apart from the management and leadership of the firm's advisory practice, George also still holds various technical roles in high profile advisory assignments, including EU funding projects and applications as well as fund raising for the private sector, both through negotiating bank loans or raising private equity, and through assisting in public equity and bond listing.
Pier Massa is leading the Project Management Office of the Malta Financial Services Advisory Council. In his private practice, he is Managing Partner at M2 - Business Frameworks, a boutique consulting firm with clients in North America and Europe. Pier’s expertise is focused on enabling organizations make strategic choices and then integrating these choices into the fabric of their operations. He is an experienced consultant and facilitator, balancing a disciplined strategic and customer focus with a pragmatic and action oriented approach that drives business results.
As an expert in business transformation and a highly experienced strategic and brand marketer, Pier has extensive management experience with Global blue chip organizations in North America such as Virgin, the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Molson Breweries, General Foods (Kraft), S. C. Johnson, as well as having internal and external strategic consulting assignments in Publishing, Retail, Telecommunications and Government. Pier’s gained his early consulting experience with The Boston Consulting Group. Pier has an MBA in Strategy and Marketing (Rotman School of Business) and a BA (Hons) in Economics and Psychology from Trinity College (Toronto).