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Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation appoints Ghislaine Nadaud as first Asia Pacific head of ESG

Nadaud joins the Japanese banking giant after a long stint as APAC sustainability head for ABN AMRO.

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC), one of Japan’s largest banks, has appointed Ghislaine Nadaud as director of environmental, social and governance (ESG) solutions for Asia Pacific.

Nadaud takes on the newly created position after a brief stint with the United Nations as a sustainable financing consultant. She will be based in Singapore, a regional hub for the bank’s sustainable finance initiatives, and joins to lead and drive SMBC’s ESG ambitions.

Prior to consulting to the UN, Nadaud led ABN AMRO’s Asia Pacific sustainability function, but moved on after the Dutch multinational scaled back operations in the region in August in response to tough economic conditions brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Nadaud had been with the company for 14 years, starting out as legal counsel in Amsterdam, before pivoting to ESG risk, advisory and monitoring.

Nadaud joins SMBC a few months after news emerged that Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG), SMBC’s holding company, would stop financing for any coal-fired power plants following sustained pressure on Japanese lenders to reduce coal funding. 

SMBC was among the founding members of Singapore’s first institute for green finance research and talent development, launched last October.

Nadaud’s hire comes at a busy period for green finance appointments in Asia. SMBC rival Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group and investment giant BlackRock appointed their first APAC heads of ESG finance, and United Overseas Bank installed its first chief sustainability officer, last month.

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