Senior exit from Stan Chart as another tech firm swoops on Singapore banking sector

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Standard Chartered Bank in Central district

Christopher Hagen, a director in Standard Chartered’s information technology team in Singapore, has joined Oracle, in a move that underlies the vulnerability of banks to tech-company raids on their senior staff.

Hagen started work at Oracle’s Singapore office earlier this month as director of insight and customer strategy, focused on ASEAN and South Asian markets, according to his online profile.

He was with Stan Chart for six years, and spent his final few months there as a Singapore-based director for Brexit migration, and acquisitions and integrations, within information technology. In that role, Hagen, who has previously worked in Germany, coordinated the “technology migration” for Stan Chart’s new European Union hub in Frankfurt.

From October 2016 to October 2018, Hagen worked as a director for operational transformation, securities services, IT and operations, at Stan Chart. He held two other director-level jobs since joining the bank in Singapore in 2013.

Oracle’s hiring of Hagen suggests that large technology companies in Singapore are increasingly open to taking on people who’ve forged their careers in finance rather than at rival tech firms. Singapore’s oversized finance sector provides a large talent pool to poach from, including tens of thousands of technologists. JP Morgan alone employs 1,000 people in technology, one third of its local workforce.

Oracle is not the only tech firm to have recruited from Stan Chart. Guillaume Van de Vyver, a director in group strategy at the bank, moved to Google in Singapore last May in an APAC cloud strategy role. And Stan Chart is far from the only large bank in Singapore to have lost key staff to the tech sector. DBS’s APAC head of cloud engineering, Carl Bachman Kharazmi, is now at Google, while Gary Wong, the head of GrabPay, moved from OCBC last year, for example.

At a recent event organised by eFinancialCareers in Singapore, HR professionals from banks expressed growing concern about the talent threat posed by tech companies. “The likes of Google and Alibaba have good compensation, benefits, workplace cultures and career progression, so we need to offer attractive jobs for their people to consider joining us,” one of the event attendees said.

Technology, however, remains one of the most active areas for recruitment at Stan Chart. Among other teams, the firm is hiring for its SC Ventures fintech unit in Singapore, and for its new virtual bank in Hong Kong.

New recruit Oracle Hagen, who started his career in 1999 at Daimler in Germany, worked for Deutsche Bank in a strategic process management role in Singapore before he joined Stan Chart.

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: smortlock@efinancialcareers.com

Image credit: danielvfun, Getty

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