NZ Hamilton

First NZ Capital’s Hamilton leaves banking

First NZ Capital’s head of investment banking is moving to casino and hotel operator Skycity, the latest banker to abandon the hard-pressed sector.

First NZ Capital’s head of investment banking Rob Hamilton has left banking to become the chief financial officer of Skycity Entertainment, joining the long line of bankers that have switched to the corporate world since the global financial crisis.

Hamilton, who is also on the board of the New Zealand Olympic Committee, starts at the casino and hotel operator in October, the companies said on Wednesday.

Investment banks have struggled to maintain profitability as regulators have cracked down on the sector. As a result, most banks have shrunk their investment banking teams and now run leaner ships. In addition, total compensation packages have been falling.

In another example, Guy Wylie, previously managing director and head of primary markets for Asia Pacific at Royal Bank of Scotland joined Telstra as its corporate treasurer last year.

Other high profile departures from the banking sector include former Goldman Sachs partner Yusuf Alireza, who joined Hong Kong’s Noble as its chief executive in 2012.

In a memo seen by FinanceAsia NZ Capital said that Sam Ricketts has replaced Hamilton as head of investment banking. Carl Blanchard and Martin Stearne will be made managing directors.

James Lee’s role has been expanded to encompass the entire securities activities of the firm including its wealth business, allowing chief executive Scott St John to continue to invest time in its Australian joint venture, Credit Suisse Emerging companies, according to the memo.

Hamilton has been with NZ Capital since 1991.

“The appointment follows an international search that generated extensive interest in the position,” said Skycity’s chief executive Nigel Morrison in filing to the Australian stock exchange.

"Skycity has great opportunities in front of it, particularly around the New Zealand International Convention Centre and Adelaide Casino redevelopment,” said Hamilton.

¬ Haymarket Media Limited. All rights reserved.