• Credit Suisse scaling back prime services under CEO Thiam
  • Some staff moving to Dublin, assets cut as Thiam lowers costs

Dougal Brech, the European co-head of prime services at Credit Suisse Group AG, is leaving, the Swiss bank said, as it scales back the unit that caters to hedge funds.

Chief Executive Officer Tidjane Thiam reduced the bank’s prime services operations, which include settling trades and lending to hedge funds, since taking the helm last year, as he seeks to bolster profitability and meet tougher capital rules. The CEO has cut assets at the unit and is moving staff to Dublin from London as he reduces costs.

“Dougal has informed us of his decision to leave Credit Suisse in February to pursue outside interests,” according to an internal memo Friday, which was confirmed by Sofia Rehman, a spokeswoman for the bank in London. “Dougal notified us of this decision some time ago, but expressed a desire to ensure the Dublin initiative was near completion and to see his team through the 2015 compensation process.”

Brech, who was based in London, joined Credit Suisse in 2007 after working at Morgan Stanley, according to Financial Conduct Authority records. The bank will search for a replacement, the memo says.

The bank’s prime services business had a “non-acceptable” level of profitability and capital usage in 2014, the lender said in a presentation in October. The bank said the unit’s risk-weighted assets would fall 50 percent to $7 billion by the end of 2015 and its leverage would drop 25 percent to $104 billion.

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