UBS close to significant investment bank restructuring

UBS close to significant investment bank restructuring

UBS Poised to Make Sweeping Changes to Investment Banking Division


NEW YORK, Aug 4 (ANBLE) – UBS Group AG is about to embark on a significant restructuring of its investment banking division following its recent emergency takeover of Credit Suisse. This move is aimed at creating unified teams and streamlining operations after the integration. The changes are set to impact multiple dealmaking groups, including healthcare, consumer/retail, financial sponsors, and equity capital markets.

The restructuring is part of CEO Sergio Ermotti’s efforts to merge UBS and Credit Suisse. While this process may prove to be painful, with potential job losses on a significant scale, it is a necessary step to adapt to the evolving economic landscape. Job cuts are inevitable, and a number of UBS bankers are expected to leave the firm due to the reshuffling.

Among the notable changes, Jeff Rose, UBS’s global head of consumer products and retail deals, is in talks about potentially exiting the company. In his place, Jon Levin, who has served as Credit Suisse’s head of retail investment banking, is rumored to be taking over. Matt Eilers, UBS’s global head of financial sponsors, is also in discussions about a possible departure, while Rob DiGia, UBS’s global head of healthcare, is said to be transitioning into a chairman-level role.

It is important to note that these changes have not been finalized and details of the restructuring are still subject to change. The individuals mentioned above were unavailable for comment, and a UBS spokeswoman declined to provide any additional information.

In addition to the shake-up within the investment banking division, UBS is also considering changes in its technology, media, and telecommunications (TMT) group. Laurence Braham, who joined UBS from Barclays Plc earlier this year, is being considered for the position of global co-head of technology. Christian Lesueur, current global head of TMT investment banking, would be his co-head. Steve Pettigrew, a recent addition to UBS from Bank of America Corp, would lead software M&A under Braham. Neil Meyer, who previously worked with Braham at Barclays and followed him to UBS, would co-lead media and communications dealmaking with Lesueur.

These personnel changes are part of UBS’s larger strategy to regain market share in the dealmaking industry. The bank slipped to eighth place in Refinitiv’s global mergers and acquisitions league table in the first half of 2023, down from sixth place the previous year. In the Americas region, UBS dropped to 14th place in the same period, down from seventh place in the previous year.

While specific numbers have not been confirmed, UBS’s savings targets and indications from insiders and analysts suggest that it may need to reduce its global workforce by about a third, potentially resulting in the loss of 30,000-35,000 jobs within the combined group.

Overall, these sweeping changes within UBS’s investment banking division and potential restructuring in its TMT group highlight the bank’s determination to adapt to market dynamics and position itself for growth in the ever-evolving financial landscape. While there may be short-term challenges, UBS is taking proactive steps to realign its operations and capitalize on future opportunities.