Credit Suisse’s $ 500 million banker persuaded to stay
Christian Meissner made a name for himself facing an exodus of talent at Bank of America in 2010, which may be one of the reasons Credit Suisse promoted him to head its bank of investment six months ago. And it looks like he might start stemming the flood at CS as well. While the situation is still volatile – according to the WSJ, a number of GMs and co-heads of the industry have left in the past two weeks – it looks like Niron Stabinsky, “Mr. SPACs” will remain.
In any battle plan to defend this investment banking franchise, this would likely have been one of the crucial lines in the sand. Operation SPAC is one of Credit Suisse’s crown jewels, having apparently generated $ 500 million in fees so far this year. If CS had been shown to be unable to retain the team leader, in addition to seriously altering the income line, it would have sent a signal that nothing was off limits; the brand damage to customers and employees would have been severe.
Looks like the line has held. The WSJ suggests that Jefferies (who has already taken almost the entire financial institution group) was just one of many potential contenders, but “people familiar with the matter” say Stabinsky is staying and an attempt on the part Wells Fargo’s raid the banking and capital markets teams in the technology industry also “fizzled out.”
The “people” are not familiar enough with the matter to know how much Mr. Meissner had to pay to win this battle, but it could have been cheap at the price. Money is by no means the only thing at stake in these hiring battles. At this level, everyone is hungry for the long haul and realizes that their true net worth will be defined by the next two decades of activity, not the one-year package.
So in fact, and somewhat paradoxically, the biggest cost in retaining rainmakers may be the cost of hiring new ones. When a top banker decides to stay or leave, they tend to be quite clear-headed in their assessment of management’s commitment to the franchise as a whole. The fact that CS was able to bring in Kyle Heroman of the US M&A team of Piper Sandler, ranked No. 1 by FIG, and Kyle Berry of Morgan Stanley to cover commercial services was probably important, as it demonstrates that the will to rebuild is there.
Bankers have a variety of different motivations – some of them want to be seen as a potential future CEO, some want to be kept out of management and close deals, and some of them just want to feel loved. . (The last of these is not to be underestimated; many major job changes have taken place because someone forgot to write a thank you note). But they all want to be sure that they are working for a company that will continue to be a player on the big stage. Christian Meissner must keep this belief alive.
Elsewhere, there’s a dusty old joke about the manager complaining that 40% of all sick days are Mondays and Fridays, but some JP Morgan bankers might find that a little less funny this year. While other companies offering flexible part-time work follow Lazard’s model and block the midweek three days as the time when everyone should be together, some JPM teams have learned otherwise – only in case where part -time working remotely is allowed, they must always be in the office on Monday and Friday.
It seems, to be blunt, a bit like being mean for fun. But it does reflect an apparent attitude of some banks that although bankers complain about inflexibility, few will actually change jobs because of it. – At JPMorgan, turnover is apparently at normal levels despite all the grumbling about getting back to the office. Historical experience suggests that bankers have a terrible habit of using their willingness to endure unpleasant working conditions as a selling point or hazing ritual. After all, although Manolo Falco claims he hopes to use Citi’s relatively generous work-from-home policy as a recruiting advantage, is he really going to be impressed by someone who cites this as the main reason for wanting to do it? to work ?
Fallout has continued elsewhere since the Archegos case, as Nomura has stopped offering cash brokerage services in the United States and Europe and has given its clients six months to find a new supplier. It is unclear why they are closing and handing in regulatory clearance rather than looking for a buyer, but it looks like they might aim to continue serving some customers with other products. (Bloomberg)
If you want to do business in Hollywood, you have to be a little Hollywood yourself. A profile of Aryeh Bourkoff, founder of the LionTree media industry M&A boutique. It is famous for its face to face pitch meetings, an extremely exclusive annual conference and for being a face in the crowd at every high profile party all over the world. He started out by rejecting 40 of 45 deals as a credit analyst at UBS, which made every banker hate him until all 40 of them went bankrupt. (Hollywood reporter)
A former BoA compliance official was sentenced to jail time in Hong Kong after an incident during the 2019 unrest (Washington Post)
Top-tier companies hire for fixed income in Africa South of the Sahara; Citi aims to add 100 employees, while Goldman intends to compete for the top spots in the DCM underwriting. (Bloomberg)
Andre Kelleners is the new European head of mergers and acquisitions for Goldman Sachs, a position opened since Mark Sorrell’s promotion last year (Financial News)
Do you think you may have forgotten how to have a drink with colleagues? Here are some tips from the Wall Street Journal, although they cite favorably the example of someone who spun two glasses of wine in four hours, so their style might not be yours. (WSJ)
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