Welcome Address by Ms Foo Mee Har at GFO Summit, Single Family Office Forum, on 12 September 2023


Mr Heng Swee Keat, Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies,

Mr Lim Chow Kiat, CEO of GIC and Chairman of WMI

Distinguished speakers and delegates,

Ladies and gentlemen,



  1. Good morning. It brings me immense pleasure to welcome you to the Global-Asia Family Office Summit 2023!


  1. It is heartening to see the strong turnout at this year’s event. We are delighted to bring close to 550 global thought leaders, families and professionals together, over the course of these two days.


  1. Today’s forum is exclusively designed for single family office principals and their professionals.


Building a Vibrant Family Office Ecosystem in Singapore

  1. The GFO Circle is where family offices come together to learn best practices as well as explore opportunities and collaborations in a range of areas from investments to philanthropy.


  1. Gatherings like this Summit provide a focal point for coming together. Today, we are glad to welcome family offices from Singapore, ASEAN, North Asia, South Asia, and around the world.  It is a great time to be in Singapore and I welcome all our overseas guests.


  1. The families here today come from diverse sectors – investments, technology, real estate, consumer goods, energy, renewables, manufacturing, maritime, education and more.


  1. We hope this peer-to-peer forum will facilitate knowledge sharing and provide a great platform for family offices based in Singapore to meet each other.


  1. We have seen a real hunger amongst family offices to learn new things. We see family offices being active participants in many of WMI’s programmes and forums, from enrolling in our Master’s degree to joining classes that cover family office governance, trusts, sustainability and philanthropy.  Families have also been keen to join our flagship investment programmes taught by the likes of Ray Dalio, GIC and Temasek.


Purposeful Wealth

  1. Increasingly, we see wealthy families wanting to go beyond straight forward grant making type philanthropy. You aspire to tap your financial resources and networks in creative ways to make impact, including new forms of giving such as venture philanthropy, concessionary capital to blended finance.


  1. To help build momentum on this front, WMI launched the Impact Philanthropy Partnership with 14 leading private banks and MAS. The goal of this Partnership is to generate excitement, awareness and interest in strategic philanthropy amongst family offices in Singapore.


  1. WMI aspire to play an instrumental role to nurture a new generation of Asian changemakers who embrace strategic philanthropy; and to prepare them to deploy their wealth, skills and passion to build a better world.


New Initiatives

  1. With the growing community of family offices in Singapore, we understand there are great benefits to put in place a systematical approach to help family offices connect the dots of the full spectrum of Singapore’s offerings.



  1. WMI will be launching the Family Office Discovery Series, with support from EDB and MAS. The Series is poised to orientate family offices:


a. To develop a robust understanding of the local investment and social impact landscape so that you can home in on areas of interest and fast-track engagement.


b. To become active members of our venture community and be connected to promising research and tech innovations by Singapore’s start-up communities and research institutes, with opportunities to support scaling of promising new ideas.


c. To build new networks in Singapore and find like-minded and trusted partners for co-investments.



  1. Through the Series, family offices will be exposed to a wide spectrum of opportunities, from building a strong peer network to exploring co-investment opportunities.


  1. The ‘Discovery Sessions’ will be held on a regular basis throughout the year.


  1. The first sessions will begin in October. If you are keen to learn more about the different facets of the ecosystem in Singapore and hear from peers about their journey, we warmly welcome you to join us.


The Theme for This Year’s Summit

  1. We look forward to a day of inspiring discussions and meaningful connections. We start with the highlight of our day – the address and dialogue with Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat.  You will then hear from global thought leaders, entrepreneurs and innovators such as Forrest Li, Ray Dalio, Sir Paul Marshall, Michael Lien and more.


  1. At the end of the day, we have also organised an intimate networking session for you to relax and meet each other over sake and tea.


Thank You

  1. Before we proceed, I would like to extend my sincere thanks to our Guest of Honour, DPM Heng for gracing this event.


  1. Special thanks also to all our distinguished panel of speakers.


  1. Thank our to MAS and EDB for your strong partnership.


  1. Thank you to all the participants here today. We are encouraged by the strong interest from families from across the region to join us in building a vibrant family office community here in Singapore.


  1. I would like to thank WMI’s founders, GIC and Temasek, for their stewardship over the years. Special thanks to our Chairman, Chow Kiat, for his guidance and unstinting support to the growth of WMI.  We thank him for his many contributions, including his participation at this Summit.


  1. To kick off the Summit, Chow Kiat delivered the keynote speech. Actually it was more like a Masterclass in Long Term Investing, sharing invaluable lessons applicable to all family offices focus on investing across generations. Later today, he will be serving as one of our moderators!  Yes, it has been “all hands on deck”, to make this a great Forum for all!   Even the Chairman has to ‘do work’!


  1. With this, I wish everyone a fruitful day ahead.