Citi's debt syndicate head lured to fintech

Duncan Phillips becomes latest to swap banking job for a financial technology firm.

Citi’s Asia bond syndicate head Duncan Phillips is set to take a job at fintech firm Ipreo, becoming the latest banker to swap finance for a job in the corporate sector.

Phillips, who has worked at Citi for 14 years, is taking a senior job in Ipreo’s global capital markets team, FinanceAsia understands.  He will move from Hong Kong to London to take the job, and is expected to leave Citi in the middle of October.

He is now the third high-profile Asian banker to shift to the tech sector this year. Standard Chartered’s Loh Long Hsiang joined Chinese peer-to-peer lender Dianrong in January. China Construction Bank’s Huang Hao jumped ship to online payments company Ant Financial around the same time.

But Phillips will have the benefit of strong familiarity with Ipreo. The company makes the software used by most Asian banks for the allocation of bonds, allowing syndicate bankers to track orders inputted by their salespeople, as well as syndicate partners at other banks.

That is part of a product suite that includes a plethora of data services, portfolio management tools, and other technology focused on corporate governance, investor relations, and deal execution.

Citi mulls replacement

Phillips has told Citi he wants a smooth transition, and will stay with the debt syndicate team until October to work out his notice. The US bank has still not announced a replacement — but claims to be spoiled for choice.

"Citi has a deep bench in debt syndicate in Asia and across our network in over 100 countries and we will be announcing Duncan's replacement in due course," Citi spokesman James Griffiths said.

Phillips has been head of Citi’s Asia-Pacific debt syndicate team since 2010, first taking the job alongside Terence Chia and then becoming sole head in 2013. Before that, he was Citi’s head of yen syndicate in Japan.

He was promoted to managing director of Citi’s Asia-Pacific debt syndicate desk on January 1 2015

He reported to Benjamin Ng, head of Asia-Pacific syndicate and acquisition finance.

¬ Haymarket Media Limited. All rights reserved.
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