Barclays nips and tucks its global workforce

Barclays cuts staff globally, but is still hiring selectively in the region.
While Barclays is cutting 2,100 jobs in its investment banking and investment management arms globally, it is still building teams in selective areas, specifically in Asia.

A bank spokeswoman declined to say yesterday how many of the 2,100 jobs cut around the world will be in Asia, but she was quick to point out that the firm has been building its Japan team.

But first, the firings. Overall, Barclays employs around 32,500 people in its investment banking and investment management divisions. More than 5,000 of those work in its Asia-Pacific investment banking, private banking and investment management teams.

Of the 2,100 jobs to be cut, sources say approximately 1,300 are expected to be in the investment banking arm, Barclays Capital; a further 500 people will be let go in Barclays Wealth and approximately 300 in Barclays Global Investors. Meanwhile, the British bank is also cutting about 400 people from its IT staff.

But it's also hiring. Last week the firm announced that it has signed up 10 new bankers in Japan, several of whom are former Lehman Brothers bankers, in a move aimed at expanding its investment banking business in Japan. These additional bankers boost its Japan investment banking head count to 35.

One of the most senior hires was Hideaki Sunaga, who joins as a managing director and co-head of the investment banking division in Japan. Sunaga will be responsible for corporate finance, equity finance and M&A and will drive the development of the firmÆs investment banking division in Japan with Takemi Ando.

Sunaga was most recently a member of the board and executive vice-president at Nihon Trim Co, a publicly-listed Japanese entity. Previously, he worked for the Nomura Group for more than 20 years, where he held a number of senior management positions, including head of European investment banking based in London.

Other former Lehman bankers to join Barclays include: Takumi Tanaka, who came on board in November to lead private equity coverage; Rei Kyogoku, who joined in December as head of the financial institutions group; and Masaya Kubota, who also arrived in December to cover private equity.

The Lehman Brothers hires are interesting as Barclays bought Lehman's US operations. However, Japan's Nomura outbid the competition for LehmanÆs Asian business. Still, many former Lehman employees in the region have sought work at other firms, particularly Barclays. For example, in October the bank launched equity sales and research operations in Japan by hiring 100 people from Lehman Brothers.

Recently, Barclays has been raising capital from private investors û unlike rivals Royal Bank of Scotland, or the now merged Lloyds and HBOS entity, which in October took part in the UK governmentÆs half-trillion-pound rescue package.
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