Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank both announced the appointment of new commodities chiefs for Asia yesterday. The Swiss bank has lost Gunnar Hoest, who will start at Deutsche in late June as head of Asia commodities. To fill the gap left by Hoest, Alexander Toone will shortly move from Credit Suisse's London office to Singapore to become head of the firm's Asia-Pacific commodities business.
Commodity prices have surged across the board since the middle of last year, and Asia's demand for raw materials to fuel, feed and transport its growing and urbanising populations is as strong as ever. Not surprisingly, international banks identify the region as a key source for business.
At Deutsche, Hoest will be responsible for overseeing the continued expansion of the German bank's commodities business in the region, which has grown to become a leading provider of options-based commodity products and a pioneer in new markets such as emissions and iron ore swaps. Deutsche, along with Credit Suisse, set up an iron ore swap market two years ago, which is set to grow significantly following the abandonment of the benchmark pricing system for physical iron ore last month.
Hoest will also be based in Singapore, and will report regionally to David Lynne, head of global rates Asia, and functionally to David Silbert, global head of commodities.
Hoest began his career as a derivatives trader at Credit Suisse in New York before moving to London to trade emerging market credit derivatives. He then switched to Hong Kong where he was head of emerging market credit derivatives and exotic trading, before taking responsibility for building Credit Suisse's Asian commodities business in 2006.
"[Hoest's] experience in building a successful Asian commodities business makes him an ideal candidate to drive the continued development of our regional platform," said Lynne in a statement released yesterday.
Hoest replaces Simon Grenfell, who will relocate to London as global head of metals sales and origination, reporting to Louise Kitchen, global head of commodities structuring and sales.
Meanwhile, at Credit Suisse, Toone will oversee all aspects of sales, structuring and trading, as well as the bank's commodities alliance with Glencore International. He will report functionally to Adam Knight, global head of commodities in London, and regionally to Carsten Stoehr, the Hong Kong-based head of fixed income for Asia-Pacific.
Toone was most recently global head of sales for commodities based in London.