Harris Irfan

Harris is widely recognised as one of the world’s leading Islamic bankers. He is an investment banker with 24 years experience in London and the Middle East, and the author of the critically acclaimed narrative of the Islamic finance industry, Heaven’s Bankers: Inside the Hidden World of Islamic Finance.

Harris was the co-founder of Deutsche Bank’s world leading Islamic finance team where he led some of the most ground-breaking deals in the industry including several billion dollars of sukuk and Islamic private equity deals, and a number of firsts such as the first convertible sukuk and the first multi-asset class Shari’a compliant hedging and structured products platform. He was then appointed CEO of Deutsche’s Islamic finance think tank, which he successfully restructured and turned around during the financial crisis. He was subsequently appointed global head of Islamic finance at Barclays where his team won three major industry awards.

He joined European Islamic Investment Bank in 2012 with a mandate to restructure the bank and oversee the acquisition of the asset management firm, Rasmala, and its conversion into a provider of Shari’a compliant products. Within a year of joining, the bank turned its first profit since the financial crisis. Within 2 years, it had tripled assets under management. As Head of Investment Banking, Harris led the investment banking division to become the most profitable within the firm. Rebranded as the Rasmala group, Harris sat on the group’s Executive Management Committee, Credit & Investment Committee and PR & Communications Committee.

Harris is an active member of Gateway’s Banking & Finance, Business Recovery, Conversion Factory, Digital Strategy & Fintech, Executive Strategy, Real Estate, and Turkey practices.

Harris was named one of the top 50 leaders in the global Islamic finance economy by Islamica 500. He has a degree in Physics from the University of Oxford.