UBS equity syndicate banker transfers to the US

Hannah Malter is joining UBS’s equity syndicate team for the Americas as the bank aims to put more focus on Latin America.

Hannah Malter has left UBS’s Asian equity syndicate desk in Hong Kong for a similar position with the Swiss bank in New York, according to an internal announcement.

Malter starts her new job as a director on the ECM Americas syndicate team on Monday, reporting to AC Morgan who took over as head of the ECM Americas syndicate a couple of weeks ago. Morgan previously worked in sales trading.

Including Malter, UBS will have six people working on the equity syndicate desk in New York. Her addition comes as the bank is attempting to put more focus on deals, particularly block trades, involving Latin American companies.

Sam Kendall, UBS’s global head of ECM, told FinanceAsia he sees many of the same market dynamics in Latin America as in Southeast Asia, including growing domestic economies, an increasing middle class and a lot of family owned companies. And since UBS banks 80% of the billionaires in both regions, there should be similar opportunities to originate deals, he said.

While the bank has had quite a bit of success doing equity deals in Southeast Asia, it has been less active in Latin America. Kendall is trying to change that and, since he took over as global head of ECM in January this year, he has increased the number of ECM solutions bankers focusing on Latin America to four from one-and-a-half. With the transfer of Malter, he is now adding specific syndicate capacity as well.

Since Malter joined UBS’s syndicate desk in Hong Kong four years ago, she has been handling many of the deals the bank has done in Southeast Asia. And since many of the emerging market investors that buy into that region are also big investors in Latin America, she is well placed to help boost the bank’s Latin American business.

“We are looking at what we do well in one part of the world and are using some of our best talent to try to replicate it elsewhere,” said Kendall.

The internal announcement, which was signed by James Palmer, the head of equity capital markets solutions for the Americas, noted that Malter has “considerable experience” executing a multitude of transactions across various Asia-Pacific markets.

“We are confident Hannah’s experience will add a unique dynamic, expertise and perspective to our syndicate business in the Americas,” Palmer said, adding that her transfer highlights the bank’s commitment to utilise its best talent across different geographies.

Before joining the Asia ex-Japan syndicate desk in Hong Kong at the end of 2009, Malter spent three years with UBS’s Australian ECM team in Sydney.

Sources say UBS will not replace Malter in Asia straight away, but may move someone internally in due course, depending on how the markets develop in the new year.

The bank still has five people on the equity syndicate desk in Hong Kong, which is led by Damien Brosnan. However, the loss of an experienced syndicate banker like Malter is bound to leave a gap.

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