After almost one year in London, Sam Kendall will return to Hong Kong to become head of equity syndicate for Asia at UBS. He will take over from Stuart Mackay who has been named head of equity capital markets (ECM) origination for Asia excluding China, according to an internal announcement seen by FinanceAsia.
Both appointments are effective immediately and were triggered by the resignation last week of Mark Williams, UBS's head of Asia ECM who, according to sources, will be joining Nomura as head of ECM for Asia ex-Japan in a few months.
Mackay will not be taking over Williams's former job, however, but will have a more targeted role in charge of origination. According to the announcement, he will be responsible for ensuring that UBS maintains a market-leading ECM business in the region with a specific focus on Southeast Asia, Korea and Taiwan. Origination for China will remain the responsibility of Joseph Chee, who is head of China global capital markets (GCM). GCM includes both equity and debt capital markets.
The decision to leave the head of ECM job vacant also means that Kendall, who was co-head of equity syndicate for Asia before he transferred to London at the end of May last year, is not moving back into the exact same role, but is taking on wider responsibilities. While he previously reported to the head of ECM for Asia, he will now report directly to the head of Asia GCM, Steven Barg. Kendall will also retain his role as global head of blocks, which he took up in connection with the move to London. For that position he will continue to report to Matthew Koder, the firm's joint global head of ECM.
Mackay will also report to Barg and both he and Kendall will join the Asian GCM executive committee.
In a story covering Williams's resignation and move to Nomura last week, FinanceAsia noted that UBS typically prefers to fill key positions from within its own ranks rather than hiring someone externally, and the appointments of Mackay and Kendall confirm this.
In yesterday's internal announcement, UBS referred to its "exceptionally deep bench of talent" that is enabling it to promote from within. "We are confident that Sam and Stuart's experience and proven leadership qualities will ensure that the team will continue to distinguish itself as one of the best in Asia," it said.
Kendall joined UBS in Australia in 1996 in equities trading and has since worked in New York, London (where he ran the Asia sales trading desk) and Singapore. He moved to Hong Kong in 2006 to set up the bank's blocks franchise and was named co-head of equity syndicate in March 2008 together with James Fleming when their predecessor John Sturmey resigned to join ABN AMRO (now Royal Bank of Scotland). He transferred to London in May 2009 to become head of equity syndicate for Europe, the Middle East and Africa as well as global head of blocks.
Mackay transferred to Hong Kong from Europe in September last year to take charge of the equity syndicate desk in Asia after Fleming was appointed head of ECM syndicate for the Americas, based in New York. Mackay has 15 years of experience within investment banking and capital markets, having previously worked in both the US and Europe for Goldman Sachs and Lazard.
UBS tops the overall ECM league table for Asia so far this year with $4.9 billion worth of deal credits and 23 trades. Among the deals it has helped arrange are: the $708 million Hong Kong IPO for French cosmetics and skincare company L'Occitane; a $3.2 billion rights issue for China Merchants Bank; a $1.03 billion sell-down in Woori Finance Holdings by KDIC; a $600 million block in Esprit Holdings; and a $511 million placement of new and existing shares in China Yurun Food Group.
Notably though, UBS was not among the nine banks that were mandated last month for Agricultural Bank of China's planned A- and H-share IPO, which is said to be targeting as much as $30 billion -- and could earn the involved banks close to $500 million in fees.