Since June, 2005 Hanning had been in charge of one of Morgan Stanley's most profitable industry groups: the general industries group (GIG). Hanning took over GIG when Morgan Stanley lost Sheldon Trainor to Merrill Lynch. Hanning moved to Hong Kong (from Sydney) at the end of 2004 when he became Morgan Stanley's regional head of M&A (to replace Gokul Laroia who moved to a capital markets role). Prior to that he had been head of Australian investment banking. At Morgan Stanley Hanning was in charge of the M&A portfolio for only six months as TrainorÆs departure precipitated a shuffle of portfolios. Hanning became a managing director at Morgan Stanley in December 2002.
Angus Barker, who currently heads M&A for UBS, will be moving on to a financial sponsors role heading private equity coverage in the region. Barker is a veteran at UBS, with the firm since 1990 and in Asia since 1998. His move corroborates the potential investment banks envisage in the private equity product in the region.
Hanning's hire comes as part of an ongoing effort by UBS to boost its standing in Asian M&A - where its franchise has always been relatively weaker than in the equities and debt areas. The arrival of Hanning - who comes from a firm that has traditionally been one of the top M&A houses in the region - is viewed by marketwatchers as a serious statement of intent.
It is not clear, on the other hand, who will replace Hanning as head of GIG at Morgan Stanley. But his departure - which comes on the back of several key departures earlier in the year - will be viewed as a blow.