Reshuffle at CSFB

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ACredit Suisse First Boston has announced a reorganization of its high-yield debt division following the departure of Jon Ezrow, co-head of US high-yield capital markets. After six years with the bank, Ezrow will be leaving to take on a senior portfolio management role with Goldentree Asset Management, L.P.

Goldentree is one of the fastest growing asset managers in the leveraged finance space, having mushroomed to over $5 billion in assets under management since its founding three years ago.

“Jon has played a critical role in maintaining our position as the number one underwriter of high-yield debt, and has led some of our largest and most innovative financings. While we will miss Jon’s financial acumen and capital markets prowess, we are very pleased that these prodigious talents will be housed at one of our most important clients,” says a bank source close to the move.

Tim O’Hara, who served as co-head of the US team with Ezrow, has been promoted to head of global high-yield capital markets. Craig Packer will assume responsibility for the US business. Steve Seltzer will continue in his role as head of high-yield capital markets for Europe, reporting to O’Hara.

Kevin Smith joins the US team from CSFB’s bank debt capital markets team, to be replaced by David Miller, who moves to New York from Los Angeles.

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BoA fine-tunes debt

In an effort to boost profits, Bank of America has completed a review of its debt business and created a debt operating committee to oversee its three debt products groups.

“The committee’s purpose will be to provide strategic oversight to the businesses and drive the implementation of our strategy. We will also set specific goals for revenue, risk-adjusted profitability, and market share by product, client, and region for the debt platform to accomplish by 2005,” says Ed Brown, head of corporate and investment banking and co-chair of the committee along with Richie Prager, who was named as debt chief operating officer.

The integrated debt platform resulted from a comprehensive review of the Bank of America’s business, with over 100 interviews with leading debt professionals.

Heading the debt platform products groups are: Pat Augustine, head of investment-grade and asset securitization group; Jonathan Moulds, head of liquid products, overseeing Treasuries, agencies, derivatives, commodities, and the foreign exchange group; and Tom White, head of the leveraged finance group. All report to Brown.

Other committee members include: Bill Hodges, serving in a new role of head of debt capital markets and leasing; Chris Mandell, head of investor client management; Arrington Mixon, head of debt for EMEA; and Joe Price, head of portfolio management. Mixon will serve on the committee as international debt representative.

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BGI poaches Talbot

Barclays Global Investors is boosting its US operations in active fixed-income management with the hire of Mark Talbot, former head of international bonds at State Street Global Advisors in London.

Talbot is set to relocate to San Francisco and will begin his new role as senior US fixed-income product strategist in September. He will report to Partha Dasgupta, BGI’s head of fixed-income product strategy.

Responsible for SSGA’s fixed-income business outside the US, Talbot was in charge of a team of over 30 investment professionals located in Europe and Asia. John Bowers, BGI’s head of global fixed income, says: “His wealth of experience in the investment process, in product development and in understanding client needs will be an important asset.”

Talbot is the third senior hire at BGI’s US headquarters this year. Head of US fixed-income research Peter Knez joined from Lincoln Capital Management in February, and in May Stephen Kim, formerly with Dresdner RCM Global Investors, joined BGI as a US strategic account manager.

BGI says the hires represent part of a concerted effort to expand its active fixed-income business in the US. In the first six months of 2003, BGI saw the level of assets invested in US active fixed income nearly double, while its global active fixed-income assets reached $31.8 billion.

At State Street, Talbot is the latest in a string of departures across all divisions. Among those who have left the fixed-income group are Vic Thompson, head of global fixed income, and Joe Marvan, head of US core fixed income. Heydon Traub, head of global asset allocation, has also left after 16 years with the firm and Avinash Persaud, global head of research, is leaving to manage a currency investment fund.

Talbot is replaced by Vincent Kok, who has spent two years as head of SSGA’s global bond group based in London. Prior to moving to London, Kok was a senior portfolio manager at SSGA in Singapore responsible for fixed income in South-east Asia.

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US foray for DBRS

Toronto-based rating agency Dominion Bond Rating Service has launched its US-based commercial mortgage-backed securities operation with the opening of a new office in Chicago.

Former co-head of the CMBS group at Duff & Phelps, Jack Toliver, heads the new DBRS team with the benefit of over 20 years of experience in the real-estate finance industry. Joining Toliver are two former Fitch Ratings analysts: Erin Stanford and Mary Jane Potthoff.

Greg Nelson, head of DBRS’s structured finance division says: “This represents a beachhead in terms of our US CMBS effort. We hope to expand our US presence by building from this core group.”

Toliver is confident that DBRS will be able to access the US market for CMBS ratings by the 4Q03. “We are fine-tuning our models in close consultation with key CMBS investors to ensure that we can offer timely insights at issuance and throughout the life of the securities,” he says.

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Also on the move...

RBC Capital Markets has added Jeffrey Kelly to its leveraged finance group. Kelly moves from JPMorgan Chase, where he worked in acquisition finance and media and telecommunications. He reports to Kenneth Kencel, head of leveraged finance. Kelly has previously worked for Salomon Smith Barney and CSFB.

RBS Dain Rauscher has hired senior fixed-income bankers Gene Shepherd and Duncan Lamme for its Houston office, where they will specialize in municipal utility districts and kindergarten to twelfth-grade education financing. Both move from Legg Mason, where Shepherd was managing director of Texas public finance and Lamme was principal.

Sean Bonner and Joseph Niemann have left Bank of America to join Wachovia Securities’ high-grade credit default swap trading group in Charlotte, North Carolina. Bonner will head the division, while Niemann joins as senior credit default swap trader. Both report to Ben May, head of credit products. Wachovia has also hired Arturo Cifuentes as senior CDO analyst. He joins from Triton Partners, where he was co-head of structured products and co-manager of the $307 million CDO Triton Opportunities Fund I. He reports to Brian Lancaster, head of structured products research in the fixed-income division.

Irvin Goldman has joined Cantor Fitzgerald as president of its debt capital markets and asset management divisions. Goldman leaves his position of managing director overseeing fixed-income sales and trading at CSFB. Earlier this year, Cantor added sales and trading of high-yield bonds to its fixed-income business.

Vincent Priolo has joined Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein’s global emerging markets business as senior sovereign debt trader of external debt in the most active Latin America countries, such as Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela. He reports to Peter Carril, global head of external debt trading.

T Rowe Price International, the European arm of the US fund manager, has appointed Laurence Linklater as vice-president in the fixed-income team. He will be responsible for European fixed-income research and joins the international fixed-income asset allocation group. Linklater previously worked at Allianz Dresdner Asset Management, where he was chief investment officer for balanced products.

Deutsche Bank’s Latin American debt capital markets division has recently made two new hires: Roy Ellis and Raúl Martínez-Ostos Jaye. Ellis will be based in New York and joins the bank from Citigroup’s Latin American debt capital markets team, where he was responsible for coordinating debt issuance, debt restructuring, and liability management transactions. Martínez-Ostos will be based in Mexico City and joins after almost five years at Mexico’s Ministry of Finance and Public Credit. He will work closely with the New York-based team on Mexican public and private sector origination coverage. Both Ellis and Martínez-Ostos will report to Marcelo Blanco, head of Latin American debt capital markets.

Niraj Mohin, a former member of the internal audit department of Deutsche Bank, has joined the Fitch Risk Advisory Group in Greenwich, Conn. At Deutsche, Mohin assisted in the development and implementation of the risk audit plan for the global derivatives and equities businesses, and worked on improvements to internal risk controls and on business continuity planning for global equities.

Barclays Capital has hired Andy Isaacs to its institutional debt sales team in New York. Isaacs will be responsible for selling interest rate products to institutional clients and will report to Tim Cassidy, head of rates sales. Isaacs joins BarCap after four years in Deutsche Bank’s institutional sales team. Before that he had similar roles in fixed-income sales with Lehman Brothers and Morgan Stanley.

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