Staff Reporters
Jul 27, 2022

Asia-Pacific Power List 2022: Karen Ngui, DBS

Ngui is a strong proponent of building the bank’s purpose from the inside out, anchored by a clear vision to build a diverse and healthy workforce.

Asia-Pacific Power List 2022: Karen Ngui, DBS
Asia-Pacific’s 50 most influential and purposeful marketers

Karen Ngui

Managing director, head of group strategic marketing & communications
DBS Bank
Member since 2018

Karen Ngui has proved yet again why she’s a mainstay on this list. She continues to steer DBS towards growth and a strong purpose-driven vision. The 54-year-old financial institution may provide a broad range of services—such as corporate banking, retail banking, and wealth management—but its purpose is simple: deliver banking that is easy, seamless and invisible so that its customers can ‘live more and bank less’. 

Like any great leader, Ngui ensures that her brand purpose is built from the inside out. More specifically, the PRIDE (purpose-driven, relationship-led, innovative, decisive and everything fun) values anchor her work so that the bank not just achieves its business goals but also positions itself as an employer of choice. Hence, employee engagement and people development are important KPIs for Ngui. 

One of her points of pride is that women comprise 49% of the organisation’s workforce, 40% of senior management, and run its largest businesses and key functions across the bank. And for this, DBS has been named to the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI) for the fifth year running. In 2021, Ngui also established a charter within the marketing team to formalise unity, focus and conviction.

It’s no wonder DBS was named Singapore’s Strongest Brand by Brand Finance and ranked first among ASEAN financial services and insurance companies in the global rankings. Plus, DBS’ brand performance in 2021 outperformed competitors in Singapore, with over 80% of Singaporeans polled picking DBS as their preferred bank of choice, according to a brand health study commissioned by the bank.

In terms of public-facing work, Portraits of Purpose, an initiative launched in 2020, continues to showcase stories that depict hope, courage and generosity and has so far attracted 610,000 unique visitors, over 32 million video views and two million digital engagements to date. Sparks, DBS’ well-received online mini-series, has also launched a second season, garnering some 400 million views and over 20 million digital engagements across Asia. 

Ngui leads a team of more than 100 across six core markets: Singapore, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia and Taiwan.

Asia-Pacific’s 50 most influential and purposeful marketers


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