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Anthony Ritossa shows Dubai the way to wealth

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© Provided by Khaleej Times Sir Anthony Ritossa, chairman of Ritossa Family Office.

Sir Anthony Ritossa, chairman of Ritossa Family Office, endearingly addresses the country as “our UAE” or Dubai as “our emirate”.

It’s compelling to think why this 52-year-old — Australian born with a European heritage, who is a resident of Dubai and a proud recipient of the UAE’s 10-year Golden Visa — calls the country’s most populous emirate his home for the past four years.

Perhaps, the ample reasons are not far to seek, as Khaleej Times found out during a tête-à-tête at his plush DIFC office.

To see Anthony — as he is popularly addressed — rubbing shoulders with who’s who in the UAE reinforces his clout of managing family offices and businesses — all in a routine day’s work.

So, what’s his charm offensive?

“I’m a family office influencer, impact investor in various projects, mentor, philanthropist, author, and sought-after speaker. As the founder of the Ritossa Global Family Office Investment Summits, I lead a series of high-level, closed-door family office gatherings — held in cities such as Dubai, Monaco, Riyadh and Miami — that are dedicated to accelerating change via high-level discussion and debate of actionable strategies for a better future. I have a deep passion for bringing people together to achieve greatness and support sustainable development. I also aim to support and inspire the next generation of leaders,” he explained.

Anthony’s passion is embedded in bringing global businesses to Dubai as it offers unparalleled quality of life based on solid infrastructure, healthcare systems, sustainability, safety, and resiliency.

“The UAE works hard to attract talent and its economic performance continues to be strong. Government programmes and incentives helped the Gulf region recover much faster from the Covid-19 pandemic. Our handling of the pandemic was exemplary. The government of Dubai and the UAE’s visionary leadership have been pulling out all stops to help businesses and entrepreneurs, and welcome public-private partnerships. Dubai is booming and hotels are at 100 per cent capacity. Businesses are robust,” he said.

Expo 2020 Dubai promises to be a strong catalyst in attracting people and talents across the globe. “I have visited the Expo and I am tremendously impressed and excited to visit again.”

Anthony’s first trip to Dubai was nine years ago on work. Later, he got his family on vacation “since we enjoyed it so much the first time”.

Soon, he decided to “relocate to Dubai with his family and finally set up a base”.

The decision, he said, was primarily based on “business opportunities and high lifestyle quotient”.

Subsequently, the Ritossa Family Office team has relocated to Dubai, and operates out of the DIFC.

“We enjoy living in Dubai due to the emirate’s reputation for safety; availability of quality education; ease of transportation; and advanced healthcare systems that came to the fore during the effective handling of the Covid-19 pandemic. I expect businesses to grow by leaps and bounds in the near future as more people do the same. Dubai is truly a global hub for business that offers incredible opportunities to entrepreneurs, multi-billion corporations, and conglomerates,” he added.

The Ritossa Summits in Dubai have attracted over 40 companies that have either set up regional or global headquarters, after visiting the emirate for the first time to attend the business conference.

In the past five years, Anthony has hosted over 5,200 elite family offices; prominent business owners; sheikhs; royal families; private investment companies; sovereign wealth funds; and industry professionals from over 55 countries at 17 conferences — whose cumulative wealth is estimated at around $4.5 trillion (Dh16.53 trillion).

These events have led to over $2.4 billion (Dh8.82 billion) in investments in companies ranging from start-ups to major global corporations. “We’ll continue to host leading events in locations such as Dubai, Riyadh, and Monaco next year,” he said.

Despite his rich international experience, the UAE holds a special place in his heart.

“I have travelled to all the seven emirates and have had amazing experiences. A ‘glamping’ trip to Sharjah’s Mysk Kingfisher Retreat has been a standout experience because of its exclusive access to a unique world of marine conservation and culture. Ras Al Khaimah is another lovely spot that is popular for Dubai residents and tourists alike. I hope to spend more time visiting the UAE’s various wildlife destinations and marine ecosystems in the near future,” he added.

Anthony’s wealth management rides high on his 30-year stellar career graph in having a deep understanding of international financial markets and investments across geographies.

He was also acknowledged for a distinguished Wall Street career in New York and has held senior executive positions at Nomura, Barclays Capital, Morgan Stanley, BNP Paribas, and Bankers Trust, which was acquired by Deutsche Bank.

Besides, he is an advisory board member and senior advisor to the Private Office of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Nahyan; an advisory board member for the Private Council of the Prince Mahmoud Salah Al Din Assaf; an advisory board member for the Dubai Blockchain Centre; The Fred Hollows Foundation; Immersion4 Global; and Vita Inclinata.

“I’m also a patron of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation and a professor at Al Khalifa Business School, where I was awarded an honorary Ph.D,” he added.

Anthony is a member of the Forbes Business Council, a fellow with the RSA (Royal Society for the Encouragement of the Arts, Manufactures and Commerce), and a 2021 nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize.

He holds degrees from the University of Technology and The Scots College in Sydney, Australia, and the Ivy League Harvard University.