Simona Watkis, the President and CEO at PROVEN Wealth –
Region 1 (Cayman, Bermuda, Barbados & BVI) is a highly accomplished
executive with extensive domestic and regional experience in the Caribbean in
various areas, including sales, business development, operations, P&L
responsibility, multichannel product distribution, and marketing. She has
worked with both start-up and growth organizations.
In her previous role as the CEO of NCB Capital Markets
(Barbados) Limited, Simona was responsible for leading the business strategic
direction, with a particular focus on local and regional business expansion and
product development. She successfully managed a team of revenue drivers in
wealth management, syndication, and investment banking, as well as mid-office
teams in operations, compliance, and risk management. Additionally, she oversaw
back-office functions such as finance, HR, IT, and marketing.
roots in the Caribbean, Simona has the privilege of serving as a director of
the Barbados Stock Exchange, where she sits on the Audit, Finance, and
Viability Committees. She also previously served as a member of the Barbados
Chamber of Commerce, where she was a council member and sat on the Finance
tenure, Simona spearheaded several transformational initiatives that helped
scale the business, showcasing her leadership abilities and business acumen.
Simona currently lives in the Cayman Islands.
“No one can be a great
leader unless they genuinely care about the success of everyone on their team.”
Suite of Wealth Management Advisory Services
PROVEN Wealth Limited (PWL) is a wholly owned subsidiary of PROVEN Group Limited; and is one of the Caribbean’s premier wealth management companies, managing billions of dollars of assets on behalf of the company’s institutional and individual clients. Its primary focus here in Cayman is to provide individuals with a full suite of wealth management advisory services as well as institutional clients with private capital and other investment banking needs.
together one of the most experienced teams in the local financial sector, who
in aggregate have successfully managed billions of dollars of investments and
capital market transactions for its clients whilst delivering consistent
returns and expert financial advice over the past two decades.
takes pride in helping people, businesses, and institutions manage, preserve,
and build wealth, ensuring that client satisfaction is at the core of what the
team does. With best-in-class financial advisory services, the firm helps lead
healthier financial lives through:
putting clients first
an excellent Client experience
sincere human-centred relationships with our clients
solutions for every type of client – for Financial Planning, Wealth Management
and Investment Banking.
“To create a blueprint to deliver on the aspiration of building out the
PROVEN Wealth Region number one brand across the Caribbean, making us the
choice for wealth management and known for performance.”
“Leadership and learning are
indispensable to each other.” – John F. Kennedy
with Leadership Role
President and Chief Executive Officer of PROVEN’s Wealth Region 1, Simona
Watkis is responsible for driving the company’s wealth management and
investment banking businesses’ top-line performance across the Northern and
Eastern Caribbean. She is also tasked with accelerating regional expansion and
promoting the development of the secondary market to offer investors in these
markets more investment opportunities, particularly in fixed income investments
and structured financing.
believes that aspiring leaders should exhibit the following five qualities:
- Build emotional intelligence: Emotional
intelligence enables leaders to keep their cool in tense situations and
maintain harmony within their teams. Rather than reacting impulsively,
emotional intelligence helps leaders to work through their emotions and
communicate effectively in challenging situations.
- Develop a growth mindset: A growth mindset
allows leaders to view challenges and setbacks as opportunities for growth
rather than obstacles to success. This mindset promotes innovation and a
continuous drive for improvement.
- Learn to listen: Active listening is a
critical tool for aspiring leaders. It enables leaders to focus on what is
being said and to respond thoughtfully, based on reason, rather than
- Practice confidence: Confidence is
essential for effective leadership. It enables leaders to make decisions
confidently and communicate them effectively to their teams.
- Practice good time management: Meeting or
exceeding deadlines is a quality that sets a good example for a team.
Aspiring leaders should practice good time management skills to ensure
that they are able to meet their obligations and support their team
“Employees do not leave an
organization they leave poor leadership.”
on Constant Change in Industry
observed that the wealth management industry has undergone gradual changes in
the past decade, largely due to evolving customer demands, regulatory
requirements, and technological advancements. These changes necessitate that
industry players be responsive and proactive in their solutions and possess the
agility required to adapt to changing circumstances.
customers now have easy access to information, making them more informed and
better able to plan their investments and set goals. As a result, advisors and
industry players need to be knowledgeable subject matter experts who can guide
individualized investment decisions in a proactive and innovative manner to
achieve smooth and appropriately adjusted outcomes.
it is crucial to provide customers with technologically enabled service
channels, allowing them to access portfolio and related information at their
convenience. Doing so is key to differentiation and achieving service
Group strongly believes in the core values of Integrity, Performance, Teamwork,
and Respect, which are embraced by every team member. These values serve as
guidelines for “how we conduct ourselves and are the standards by which we
In order to
ensure strategic success and performance, PROVEN has implemented a governance
structure that effectively guides the company’s outcomes. With the help of its
Investment Management Committee, PROVEN proactively evaluates markets and
opportunities to identify best practices and future-proof its goals. This
approach allows the company to stay ahead of the curve and remain competitive
in the industry.
with a Sense of Balance
family plays a crucial role in keeping her grounded. Growing up in a large
family has taught her valuable life lessons, including the importance of
helping others to grow, sharing and building each other up, and working
together towards a common goal. These early experiences have instilled a sense
of balance in Simona, allowing her to approach challenges with confidence and
to effectively plan and execute her goals with the support of her team.
understands the importance of having a singular goal that aligns with the
team’s objectives. Celebrating every win, both personal and professional, is a
key aspect of creating a motivated and winning team. This is achieved through
the implementation of effective systems, controls, and teamwork, which allow
for the delivery of outstanding performance when required. By fostering a culture
of alignment and celebration, Simona believes that teams can achieve great
Challenge has a Valuable Lesson
to Simona, challenges are accompanied by discomfort, which creates a sense of
urgency to bring about change, make adjustments, or reconsider one’s approach
to overcoming them. Simona has faced various challenges, such as studying while
parenting or moving to a new country, and these challenges have taught her
valuable lessons. Although some of these challenges were due to external
factors such as the environment or occupational health, they have made her more
resilient. Simona has learned to plan and manage the things she can control,
and she can quickly adapt to getting back on track when faced with unexpected
acknowledges that success can be defined in different ways, but she personally
views it as a combination of two factors. Firstly, by consistently surpassing
your goals, and secondly, by maintaining this pattern of success so that your
team is encouraged to adopt a similar mindset and make success aregular
occurrence. Simona believes that working with a team of achievers leads to
overwhelmingly positive results as everyone collaborates towards a shared
“Leadership is unlocking
people’s potential to become better.”-Bill Bradley
Examples to Inspire Future Generations
Watkis aspires to create a positive impact on the next generation by leaving
behind a legacy of success and a blueprint for how to achieve it. She aims to
make a meaningful contribution to her community and industry by actively
participating in initiatives that promote sustainable development.
Additionally, she seeks to use her voice to mentor and guide groups and
individuals, empowering them to become agents of positive change.
believes that becoming involved in one’s community and industry is crucial to
effecting significant changes that benefit society as a whole. She is committed
to inspiring others to follow in her footsteps, promoting a culture of
collaboration, innovation, and excellence. Her ultimate goal is to leave a
lasting impression on the next generation, inspiring them to be leaders and
change agents who can build a brighter future for everyone.