Standard Chartered, the troubled UK-based emerging markets bank, has appointed Aaron Russell-Davison as head of debt capital markets with immediate effect.
Russell-Davison, formerly head of capital markets for Asean, will continue to be based in Singapore. He replaces Henrik Raber, who was promoted to global head of capital markets in August and who Russell-Davison now reports to. Raber is also based in Singapore.
“I’m taking over the reins of a highly effective team and will be working with some very talented individuals in servicing the DCM needs of our clients,” Russell-Davison told FinanceAsia.
Russell-Davison is an experienced credit market specialist, having held senior positions in trading, sales, bond syndicate and capital markets in London, Hong Kong and Singapore.
He joined StanChart in November 2009 as head of Asian bond syndicate and has held various roles during his five-plus years at the UK bank.
Russell-Davison became global head of bond syndicate in January 2013 and was appointed to his most recent role in July of the same year.
Lynette Ortiz will succeed Russell-Davison as head of capital markets for Asean, effective April 1.
Ortiz is currently head of financial markets, Philippines, for StanChart and will relocate to Singapore on April 1.
Russell-Davison takes the helm of a healthy DCM franchise that nevertheless has room for improvement following a shake-up in 2013 that saw key staff movement.
StanChart sits outside the top-10 bookrunners for bond deals in the Asia-Pacific ex-Japan region but its performance has been steady over the past few years, according to Dealogic data.
In terms of G3 bonds — bonds issued in dollars, euros, or yen — it ranked 7th by deal value in 2014 for Asia-Pacific ex-Japan compared with 11th in 2011. In 2014 it worked on 111 deals with a total value of $15.5 billion, up from 46 deals in 2011 valued at $6.2 billion.
However, its local currency performance in Asia-Pacific ex-Japan has not been so strong, with the bank languishing in 32nd place in 2014 compared with 18th in 2011.
Singapore dollar-denominated bonds are, perhaps unsurprisingly, the exception, given the bank's long-established presence in the Lion City. StanChart has ranked 2nd since 2011, with $2.3 billion of deals in 2014 compared to $2.6 billion in 2011.
For offshore renminbi-denominated bonds, StanChart was 4th in 2014 with $2 billion worth of deals, compared to 2nd place in 2011 with $1.48 billion.
“I’m confident Aaron brings the right expertise to lead the business, given his strong market experience and knowledge of the bank’s clients,” Raber told FinanceAsia.
StanChart has had a tumultuous start to 2015 after announcing it would abandon its loss-making global equities business following a difficult five-year expansion.
It closed its global institutional cash equities, equity research and equity capital markets businesses, and said it would cut 4,000 jobs in its retail division.
Meanwhile, pressure has been mounting on StanChart’s leadership.
UK media reported this week that the bank is looking for a successor to chief executive Peter Sands, while The Telegraph newspaper said two of the bank’s largest shareholders — Temasek and Aberdeen Asset Management — are seeking to replace him by the end of the year.
"As we have said before, Peter and the management team are focused on executing the group's refreshed strategy, delivering growth, cost savings and shareholder returns, and have the full support of the board in achieving this,” a StanChart spokesperson told FinanceAsia on Thursday.
“The group is clearly aware of its disclosure obligations in respect of executive directors, and we are not making any announcement."
Shares in StanChart have fallen nearly 6% this year and by nearly 29% in the past 12 months, compared with gains of about 4% for the broader London stock market in either of the two periods.