Sjoerd Leenart says JPMorgan wants to be the world's local bank.
HSBC might have retired that catchphrase from its marketing efforts, but the head of JPMorgan in the Middle East and North Africa is happy to allude to it.
Mr Leenart is also taking a swing at the regional business of the British banking giant.
HSBC is Europe's biggest bank and the largest international lender in the UAE by some margin.
JPMorgan is the biggest bank in the United States, and though of a similar size to its British counterpart globally it is much smaller regionally. But that is quickly changing, as JPMorgan expands staff numbers to more than 200 in the region, almost doubling in size in the past two years. The bank has hired 50 new staff this year alone.
"The aim of rolling out a global corporate bank is to service multinational clients that do business across the globe, but need local services," he said. "So with that comes the need for us to be more local, in our presence and with respect to the services we provide."
JPMorgan expects opportunities to open up in infrastructure and trade finance, citing a total of US$1.5 trillion (Dh5.51tn) of infrastructure investments planned in the Middle East during the next 15 years.
"This region will require sizeable financing solutions," said Mr Leenart. "Equally, trade flows are growing rapidly and clients will demand banks to facilitate those."
It has also meant a growing need to push into Islamic finance, an area that HSBC is exiting in many of its markets.
Mr Leenart's recent hires have also raised eyebrows at its British rival.
JPMorgan has poached Abdulaziz Al Helaissi as head of global corporate banking for the Mena region and Declan Hegarty as his UAE counterpart.
Mr Hegarty previously headed HSBC's Abu Dhabi operations, while Mr Al Helaissi had previously joined JPMorgan from Saudi British Bank - HSBC's affiliate in Saudi Arabia.
That the two banks should compete for top talent is only natural, said Mr Leenart. "For this region, they're one among our main competitors," he said. But he added that JPMorgan had advantages that its British rival cannot match.
"In Saudi Arabia, we're the only US bank with a local branch licence. We hope that will make us the preferred supplier of banking services for US companies doing business in Saudi Arabia," he said.
Other major investment banks, which are facing significant troubles in their home markets have not had the same luxury, especially at a time when regulators are forcing them to hold more capital. "There's a significant shift in the banking world going on," said Mr Leenart.
JPMorgan rode out the financial crisis largely unscathed because of its insistence on maintaining a "fortress balance sheet" with sufficient capital to absorb heavy losses. That meant trading losses of $5.8bn earlier this year at its chief investment office did little to hamper the bank's profits.
Mr Leenart warned that the recent rush of liquidity into Arabian Gulf bond markets - sparked by bond-buying programmes in the US and Europe, with a glut of cheap capital available from Asia providing additional fuel for lending - could spell trouble down the line.
"The current low rate environment may increase the risk of investors buying the wrong asset or companies making the wrong investment decision.
"If money stays this cheap, almost anybody can buy any risky asset and finance it cheaply," said Mr Leenart.