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Franklin Templeton Dubai was the first global asset management firm to set up in the Dubai International Financial Centre Image Credit: Shutterstock

Global investment management firm Franklin Templeton is celebrating 20 years of presence in the Middle East.

The organisation with over 70 years of investment experience, employees in more than 30 countries and US$1.5 trillion in assets under management (as of February 28, 2021), opened its first office in Abu Dhabi in the Middle East in 2000. In 2004, it moved its operations to Dubai. The strategic leadership team overseeing the wider Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Arica (CEEMEA) business, covering clients in over 25 countries, is based out of Dubai. The Dubai office also services some of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds, central banks, family offices and global private banks based in the Middle East.

Franklin Templeton Dubai was the first global asset management firm to set up in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), a leading financial hub for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. The office has grown to over 40 employees, represented by 17 nationalities.

“Franklin Templeton is among the world’s most respected asset management firms and DIFC would like to congratulate them on its 20th anniversary in the region," says Arif Amiri, CEO of DIFC Authority. "They were one of DIFC's first clients and we have been able to grow together. Choosing DIFC as its headquarters for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa is testament to both DIFC’s status and offering as the region’s pre-eminent financial centre as well as Franklin Templeton’s enduring commitment to our region.”

"The firm has been a true pioneer in emerging markets asset management, supporting investors across the region. We look forward to supporting the next chapter in its growth story as we continue to develop the UAE's financial services sector and further the evolution of the nation's economy.”

As we take time to reflect on our achievements, it is also an opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to the region and focus on building a stronger tomorrow.

- Sandeep Singh, Regional Head of CEEMEA and Head – Islamic Business, Franklin Templeton

A major milestone

Celebrating 20 years in the region is a significant milestone for the Middle East team, says Sandeep Singh, Regional Head of CEEMEA and Head – Islamic Business, based in Dubai.

“As we take time to reflect on our achievements, it is also an opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to the region and focus on building a stronger tomorrow. We will continue to reinforce Franklin Templeton’s core values, while further building and strengthening our client relationships in the region,” he says.

“We are proud of the buoyancy in our Islamic business which has taken our Shariah AUM to all-time highs. The Legg Mason acquisition completed last year across the globe further provides us a significant opportunity to showcase our breadth of expertise to our clients. We look forward to capitalising further on advantages inherent in the Middle East office which include a large team of locally based portfolio managers and research analysts with multifaceted capabilities including a trading desk, a center of excellence for Shariah strategies and significant on-ground sales and service capabilities. These provide us a significant advantage over our global competitors.”

Image Credit: Franklin Templeton

Primed for future growth

“The region continues to evolve at a rapid pace and offers excellent potential for growth," says Singh. “The UAE has executed a swift COVID-19 vaccine rollout and a successful mission to Mars. And in a lead up to its 50-year anniversary later this year, there is the Expo 2020 that has seen the buzz return after an uncertain year. As one of the largest, most sophisticated global asset managers in the Middle East, we look forward to capturing these growth opportunities and further deepening our regional presence.”

Franklin Templeton Investments (ME) Limited is regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority. All investments entail risks including loss of principal investment amount.