Lukas Messmer
9 July 2024
Shari Nijman and Ng Yuk-hang
9 July 2024

Robin Pang


Private banker credits successful career to empathy and lifelong learning 

Robin Pang (BJ 2008) has carved out a successful career in banking. While at the JMSC, he pursued a double major in journalism and finance. His academic choice ultimately helped him land a job at HSBC, where he is currently a director at the bank’s global private banking division.

Robin was part of the “Magic 20,” the first cohort of the JMSC’s new Bachelor of Journalism programme in 2004. The BJ programme was designed to require students to pursue a double major: journalism and a subject of their choice in the faculties of arts, sciences, or social sciences. 

Only 20 students were admitted in the inaugural BJ programme. On the first day of their freshman orientation, JMSC founder and then director Ying Chan called them the “Magic 20″ — a moniker that still endures until now.

Upon graduation in 2008, Robin got a position as a management associate at HSBC. He steadily climbed the ranks at the bank, first in the commercial banking division before moving to private banking. 

In 2021, he became a director of relationship manager in HSBC’s global private banking division. His responsibilities include managing relationships with “ultra high-net worth” clients, particularly those in mainland China.

Robin delivering a presentation

Robin with other JMSC alumni, Anne Chan (middle) and Kane Wu (right), at HKU Alumni Day

Robin’s experience, spanning both commercial and private banking, has been instrumental in his rise to a senior leadership position. He attributes his success to a simple “competitive edge” — empathy. “Building trust starts with empathy” not only is his motto but also key to understanding a client’s perspective to foster strong, lasting relationships.

Robin also puts importance on lifelong learning. “Successful people seldom refrain from learning something new,” he said, highlighting the need for private bankers to possess a genuine curiosity and commitment to continuous learning to effectively serve their wealthy clientele.

Robin believes Hong Kong’s true advantage lies in its human capital. “By far, from my observations, Hong Kong still has the majority or the best in class within Asia, of professionals like bankers, lawyers, tax advisors, and family office specialists,” he said. “So I think these would be our ground for the years to come.”