Exclusive: Deutsche Bank promotes heavy hitters in Asia

With Mayooran Elalingam and Haitham Ghattas running the origination and advisory franchise, the bank intends to focus on China, India and Australia.

In his first key appointments for the investment bank since taking up his position as chief executive for Asia-Pacific at the beginning of August, Alexander von zur Mühlen has appointed Mayooran Elalingam as head of investment banking coverage and advisory, APAC, and Haitham Ghattas as head of capital markets APAC for Deutsche Bank

Both are internal appointments – Elalingam started a couple of weeks ago and Ghattas has been in position since last year.

“Asia-Pacific continues to play an important role in the growth for our overall client franchise, with advisory and capital markets at the heart of our offering. We are delighted to appoint Mayooran and Haitham to these roles to further drive the success of the franchise,” said von zur Mühlen in an internal memo seen by FinanceAsia.

The announcement elevates Elalingam and Ghattas to co-run the origination and advisory franchise for Asia-Pacific and to represent the region on global committees.

Coming so soon after von zur Mühlen appointment, the move is a recognition of the importance of capital markets and strategic advisory to Deutsche Bank and is a signal to the market about the bank’s priorities.


In a telephone conversation, Ghattas talks about the bank’s geographic and strategic priorities for DCM.

He describes China as a key market, but also highlights that India and Australia are emerging as areas of opportunity, following strong recent deal flow.  

“I've been a big supporter of India in particular over the last five or six years because that is another strong growth market. We saw in 2019 and again in 2020, more and more corporates wanting to access the offshore dollar markets,” he said.

In terms of business, the stall he lays out is clear.

“We want a balanced portfolio and we are in a position to help our clients throughout the region and particularly when it comes to our high yield capital markets and structured equity offerings where we are a top-three player. Our success has been our ability to bring clients to market effectively and to tap into, regional and global liquidity pools,” he said.

Elalingam has been with the bank since 2007. For him, China continues to be a key priority.

“One thing I'm very focused on is really putting more emphasis on China, which is our biggest market and, given our European heritage, quite an important market for cross border activity and capital flows,” he said.

He talked to FinanceAsia just after completing the acquisition of a $300 million 8.9% stake in Chindata, one of the largest hyperscale data centre solution providers operating cross regionally in China, India and other emerging markets in Asia-Pacific, for Korean conglomerate SK Group.

It is precisely the kind of deal for which Deutsche Bank pushes – it is cross-border and it is within the technology, media and telecom (TMT) sector which, like healthcare, has recovered quickly from Covid-19 disruption.


Both Elalingam and Ghattas are positive about the rest of the year as the financial outlook continues to improve following the Covid-19 lockdown.

“The tone amongst the C-Suite is becoming increasingly positive, with companies having adapted quite well to the new norm. As a result, corporates and financial sponsors are ready to move ahead with their long-term strategic priorities, which took a pause while they were more inward-focused,” said Elalingam.

Although DCM fees for most banks are down this year because volumes are down, Deutsche Bank says that it has grown its high-yield market share in APAC by more than 100 basis points this year so far.

There are, of course, issues beyond the pandemic that might cause difficulties in the next couple of quarters. Both the US elections and the ongoing trade war between China and the US remain concerns for everyone, but the bank’s outlook remains positive.

“From a Deutsche Bank perspective, our capital markets businesses are performing strongly, we're taking share and we expect to continue to do that, given the pipeline that I see,” said Ghattas.


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