Within the alternative investment industry, Alter Domus enjoys a reputation as the go-to integrated solutions provider and key partner for growth for leading asset managers, lenders, and asset owners the world over.
While the group’s origins began and remain in Luxembourg, Alter Domus today boasts a talent pool of over 4,100 employees across an international network of 37 offices in 21 countries – including, since 2011, Malta. In fact, Alter Domus Malta’s Country Executive, Chris Casapinta, counts establishing the island’s arm of the global industry leader as a landmark moment in his career, serving as a springboard for the company’s local success for more than a decade.
“We set up Alter Domus in Malta from scratch, adhering to the business model championed by the Luxembourg headquarters and the existing management team at the time. Over the years since, we have had many significant wins in terms of attracting new business to the island, among a number of other key milestones,” he shares. Indeed, Chris highlights that Alter Domus Malta has since expanded its local workforce to a team of 200, with a further 30 positions now open.
At the helm of such a large and ever-growing team, Chris has forged a leadership approach that ensures every individual team member feels valued and supported, both professionally and personally. “Everyone needs to have their space to develop according to their own priorities and interests.
“As an employer, it is critical to offer options that are inspired by the people forming part of the team. With a diverse international client base offering a multitude of services, there’s room for everyone. We value diversity and try as much as possible to employ people from different cultures and backgrounds while keeping a good gender balance so that we have a wide range of experience and expertise on the Alter Domus team.”
Describing his multi-faceted role, which includes finding the right people to join the organisation, Chris shares the qualities of a good business leader. “As a leader, one must be passionate about the business you are running and have a vision as to where the industry and the business is going,” he says. “A leader can’t think of the present; one must have a clear view of the future, where the business will be in three, five years’ time and beyond. One should not neglect any of the various aspects of the business –talent, technology, finance, regulatory matters – since every single component impacts the business as a whole.”
Yet, one element of the business is especially important, he highlights. “A huge part of being a good business leader is how you lead your own people. Talent is, after all, key to delivering to clients.” Investing in that talent is therefore critical, Chris goes on. “That is why we have a continuous training programme that helps our teams to develop their roles and understand the company culture, with regular coaching via in-house mentors as well as external consultants. We offer many opportunities to our employees to work on international assignments interacting with colleagues and clients all over the globe within our network. We believe in investing in our talent, so that they will grow both within the organisation and also in the industry.”
Speaking about his most important lesson as a business leader, Chris confirms that having an open and constant channel of communication with people brings other benefits to the business. “One piece of advice I would give to aspiring leaders is to prioritise connectivity. Those connections with your people, clients, and other stakeholders keep you open to new ideas and more switched on to the constant changes in the industry. Such communication will enable the organisation to be innovative. Leaders should never relax in an isolated office – however tempting it may be to wrangle alone with the many responsibilities and major decisions they must make. By regularly connecting with people, one is better equipped to make those key decisions in a more effective manner.”
The strong leadership and team dynamic at Alter Domus Malta also supports the company’s goal to offer service excellence to clients. Chris confirms, “We align our range of services with our clients’ needs, from statutory records, management reporting, and general accounting to tax, legal, and payroll. The name ‘Alter Domus’ means ‘another house’ in Latin, and we aspire that our clients consider us to be another house – a home away from home – when it comes to back office and accounting.”
Meanwhile, the team’s signature connectivity and aspiration towards exceptional service helped Alter Domus ride the early wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, confides Chris. “Initially, we assumed our service levels would be negatively impacted, but thankfully, we were proven wrong. The pandemic also gave us the opportunity to refine our remote-working structure so that teams could work efficiently while fully serving our clients.”
It is a system that continues to spell success at Alter Domus. This was crystallised by the company’s latest win of two prestigious awards at the Drawdown Awards 2022, which celebrate excellence and innovation within private capital fund operations and boast a judging panel of leading industry practitioners. In fact, Alter Domus is a regular winner of such awards, based on third-party information and client feedback – further testimony to the company’s commitment to serving its clients and its steady and ongoing expansion.
“Current year results indicate that 2022 will be another successful year with approximately 10 percent growth in our revenues when compared to the previous year. Budgeting such an increase in revenues in the current environment wasn’t an easy decision, but we are confident in the company’s positive outlook. Clients remain interested in our services and demand a varied range of expertise, so we are continuously building teams to ensure that clients’ expectations are met and possibly exceeded,” concludes Chris.
“We are proud that there are now 30 open positions to join our existing team of 200 people, with great opportunities to be part of a thriving, innovative global organisation from here in Malta. There is an exciting year ahead for Alter Domus!”
The interview forms part of the 50 Business Leaders 2022 project. The new online serialisation on MaltaCEOs.mt will feature 50 distinguished business leaders, CEOs, and emerging business minds to create debate and encourage business leaders to share their journey with our readers.
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