Board of Directors of Banyan Tree Holdings Limited

ho kwonping

Executive Chairman

The founder of our Group, Mr Ho KwonPing is responsible for its overall management and operations. He has been a Director since 5 July 2000. He was designated Executive Chairman on 1 March 2004.

Mr Ho is also Chairman of Laguna Resorts & Hotels Public Company Limited, Thai Wah Food Products Public Company Limited, the Board of Trustees of Singapore Management University and the Advisory Committee of the School of Hotel and Tourism Management at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. He is a non-executive Director of Diageo Plc. He is a member of the International Council and East Asia Council of INSEAD, and a Governor of the London Business School.

He previously served as Chairman of MediaCorp Pte. Ltd.

Mr Ho holds a Bachelor of Arts (Economics) from the University of Singapore and an Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration in Hospitality Management from Johnson & Wales University, USA.


Ariel P Vera

Non-Executive and Non-Independent Director

Mr Ariel P Vera was appointed Director on 11 April 2000 and designated Group Managing Director on 1 March 2004. He retired as Group Managing Director on 31 December 2013 but remains as a Non-Executive and Non-Independent Director of the Company.

Mr Vera is a Director of Laguna Resorts & Hotels Public Company Limited, Thai Wah Food Products Public Company Limited and Thai Wah Starch Public Company Limited.

He was with the Group from 1995 to his retirement in 2013. Prior to joining the Group, he was Director of Finance and Administration of Asian Resorts Pte. Ltd. from 1992 to 1995. He has over 30 years of experience in the hotel industry.

A Certified Public Accountant in the Philippines, Mr Vera holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of the East, Philippines, as well as a Master of Business Administration from the National University of Singapore.


Chia Chee Ming Timothy

Lead Independent Director

Mr Chia Chee Ming Timothy has been a Director since 8 June 2001 and became Lead Independent Director on 28 February 2007.

Mr Chia is Chairman of Hup Soon Global Corporation Limited as well as Chairman–Asia for Coutts & Co Ltd, the private banking arm of the Royal Bank of Scotland Group. He sits on the boards of several other private and public companies, including Fraser and Neave, Limited, Singapore Power Limited. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Singapore Management University and a Senior Advisor to EQT Funds Management Ltd and JM Financial Singapore Pte. Ltd.

From 1986 to 2004, he was a Director of PAMA Group where he was responsible for private equity investments and served as President from 1995 to 2004. He was previously a Director of Singapore Post Limited, SP Power Grid Limited, SP Power Assets Limited, Power Gas Limited and InnoTeck Limited as well as Chairman - Asia for UBS Investment Bank.

Mr Chia holds a Bachelor of Science cum laude, majoring in Management, from the Fairleigh Dickinson University, USA.


Fang Ai Lian

Independent Director

Mrs Fang Ai Lian has been an Independent Director since 1 May 2008.

Mrs Fang is a Director of Singapore Telecommunications Limited, Metro Holdings Ltd, and MediaCorp Pte. Ltd. as well as Advisor to the Far East Organization Group. She is also the Chairman of the Charity Council and the Board of Trustees of the Singapore Business Federation as well as Member of the Board of Trustees of the Singapore University of Technology and Design.

Mrs Fang was the Chairman of Great Eastern Holdings Limited and its insurance subsidiaries as well as a Director of OCBC Bank until her retirement in April 2014. Prior to that, she was with Ernst & Young for over 30 years until her retirement in March 2008, her last position being Chairman of Ernst & Young Singapore.

Mrs Fang qualified as a Chartered Accountant in England and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, a Fellow of the Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants and a Member of the Malaysian Association of Certified Public Accountants.


Elizabeth Sam

Independent Director

Mrs Elizabeth Sam has been an Independent Director since 23 March 2004.

Principally engaged in management consultancy, Mrs Sam is also a Director of SC Global Development Ltd, AV Jennings Ltd and The Straits Trading Company Limited. She is the Chairman and Director of Hon Sui Sen Endowment CLG Limited.

She has over 40 years of experience in the financial sector, having held the positions of Executive Vice President and Deputy President of OCBC Bank from 1988 to 1998, Director of Mercantile House Holdings plc (a company listed on the London Stock Exchange) from 1981 to 1987 and Chief Manager of the Monetary Authority of Singapore from 1976 to 1981.

She was a Director of the Singapore International Monetary Exchange and served two three-year terms from 1987 to 1990 and 1993 to 1996 as its Chairman until its merger with the Stock Exchange of Singapore. She was also previously a Director of Kasikornbank Public Company Limited and Boardroom Limited.

Mrs Sam holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Economics from the University of Singapore.


Chan Heng Wing

Independent Director

Mr Chan Heng Wing joined the Board as an Independent Director on 1 June 2012.

Mr Chan is a Senior Adviser in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Non-Resident High Commissioner to the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. He is a Director of Shanda Games Ltd, Frasers Centrepoint Ltd, Precious Treasure Pte Ltd and Precious Quay Pte Ltd which own Fullerton Hotel and Fullerton Bay Hotel respectively. He is also Chairman of the Milken Institute Asia Center based in Singapore.

He was Press Secretary of Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong and Director of the Media Division in the Ministry of Information and the Arts. His Foreign Service career included assignments in New York at the Singapore Permanent Mission to the United Nations, as Consul General to Hong Kong, Ambassador to Thailand and Consul General to Shanghai. When he retired from the Foreign Service in 2008, he joined Temasek Holdings as its Chief Representative in China until 2010 and then the Managing Director for International Relations in Temasek International until 2011. Prior to his diplomatic career, he was a television journalist, producer and interviewer. He was a Non-Executive and Independent Director in Fraser and Neave, Limited until January 2014.

Mr Chan holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) and a Master of Arts from the University of Singapore as well as a Master of Science in Journalism from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism in New York.


Tham Kui Seng

Independent Director

Mr Tham Kui Seng was appointed an Independent Director on 1 June 2012.

Mr Tham is a Director of Global Logistic Properties Limited, Sembcorp Industries Ltd, The Straits Trading Company Limited, Maxwell Chambers Pte Ltd and Straits Real Estate Pte Ltd and Sembcorp Properties Pte. Ltd. He is also a member of the Board of The Housing & Development Board and The Singapore Land Authority as well as a Corporate Advisor for Temasek International Advisors Pte Ltd.

He was the Chief Corporate Officer of CapitaLand Limited, overseeing the corporate services functions of the real estate group, from 2002 to 2008. He also previously served as a Director of Raffles Medical Group Ltd, CapitaLand China Holdings Pte Ltd and SPI (Australia) Assets Pty Ltd.

Mr Tham holds a Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours) in Natural Science - Engineering Science from the University of Oxford, UK.