Kenneth Courtis

Chairman of Starfort Investment Holdings
Former Vice Chairman, Goldman Sachs Asia.

Expert on Asian economies, global market forces, politics, and corporate strategy.

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As one of the world’s leading investment bankers and analysts of Asian economies, Kenneth Courtis influences major business decisions and moves markets with his public comments. For his unusual accuracy as a predictor of economic trends, business and government leaders seek his advice on matters of international economics, finance and investment.

He is widely sought after by the heads of major corporations and investors for his knowledge of how global market forces, financial and political developments, and corporate strategy interact. He has also worked closely with central banks, ministries of finance, and heads of government. He has been called upon to advise the heads of governments of countries in Europe, Middle East, Asia, and North America, including four U.S. Presidents.

Kenneth Courtis advises major clients throughout the Asia-Pacific region, Europe and North America and has led a number of large, international corporate transactions centered on Asia and pioneered a number of investment banking areas across the region.

Extremely knowledgeable, articulate and accessible, this award-winning speaker has a rare gift for explaining economic forces in down-to-earth language. Jeffrey Garten, dean of the Yale School of Management, a 15-year veteran of Wall Street and former Undersecretary of Commerce for International Trade, says of Courtis:
"He is a genius in capturing the essence of a trend or a set of forces with language that resonates with both experts and laymen. He has the keenest sense of the interconnection between economic and political forces of anyone I’ve seen."

Mr. Courtis is currently finishing a new book on economic, financial, business and political developments in Asia and their broader implications internationally. He also is a regular columnist for Time International, writing mostly on Asian issues; and for Fortune magazine, covering global economic issues.

Kenneth Courtis is Chairman of Starfort Investment Holdings, which has interests in financial advisory, funds management, private equity, and commodities. He is the former Managing Director and Vice Chairman of Goldman Sachs Asia, where he advised on large corporate transactions, government financing programs and privitizations. Formerly a Chief Economist and Strategist, Courtis lectures at Keio and Tokyo universities, Japan’s two most prestigious educational institutions, l’Institut d’etudes politiques, Paris, and in universities in North America. He is a member of the boards, advisory councils, and trustee of a number of international firms, universities, and research institutes in Asia, Europe and North America.

Dr. Courtis received an undergraduate degree from Glendon College in Toronto and an M.A. in international relations from Sussex University in the United Kingdom. He earned an M.B.A. at INSEAD (the European Institute of Business Administration), where he was recipient of the Heath Prize, and received a Doctorate with honours and high distinction, from l’Institut d’etudes politiques, Paris. He has lived and worked in Asia for more than two decades.


  • Chairman, Starfort Holdings
  • Managing Partner, Courtis Global & Associates
  • Founding Partner, Themes Investment Management and Themes Investment Partners
  • Former Managing Director & Vice Chairman, Goldman Sachs Asia
  • Columnist, Time International and Fortune
  • Lectures at Keio and Tokyo Universities, l’Institut d’etudes politiques, Paris, universities in North America


Kenneth tailors each presentation to the needs of his audience and is not limited to the topics we have listed below. These are subjects that have proven valuable to customers in the past and are meant only to suggest his range and interests. Please ask us about any subject that interests you; we are sure that we can accommodate you.

Asian Economies

Expanding into Asia - Understanding your opportunities


Expect a bloodbath in oil and gas over next 12 months | 2016

Hong Kong movement will splinter


A non-profit trade association for the global institutional real estate investment industry:
Ken — It was delightful meeting you in Washington. Feedback on your presentation was outstanding and something I personally much enjoyed. There has been much demand for your slides, and there were about 20 written questions for you for which there was no time. Somehow you caught all of the right spots for the group. I do not think many had appreciated the divergent strenghts on both sides of the Pacific previously in quite the way you set them out. Your presentation was real value-added for the participants. Thanks so much for doing this. Hope that we will have the occasion to work together again.

An international members institute for company directors:
Ken's presentation was one of the favourite sessions. Both you and Ken were an absolute delight to work with and I do hope that I may be able to work with you again for our conference in 2009 that is scheduled to be held in Tokyo.