Bank of America Hires Debt Market Bankers From Credit Suisse

Bank of America Corp. hired two debt capital markets bankers from Credit Suisse Group AG as the lender reorganizes its Asian bond and loan arranging unit.

Devesh Ashra will join as head of Asia debt capital markets syndicate, according to an internal memo confirmed by Mark Tsang, a spokesman for the Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank. Ashra left Credit Suisse in Hong Kong last week, a person familiar with the matter said. Hital Desai will also move over from the Swiss bank as part of the bond syndicate team, while three current Bank of America employees were given new roles, the memo stated.

The U.S. bank holds a 7.4 percent market share among arrangers of dollar-, euro- and yen-denominated bonds sold by companies from Asia outside Japan this year, ranking seventh, data compiled by Bloomberg show. HSBC Holdings Plc tops the list, with Credit Suisse coming in ninth, the data show. Bank of America has helped raise debt for companies including Noble Group Ltd., Swire Properties Ltd. and Bank of India, boosting its share of deals from 5.9 percent in 2012.

At least three bankers left the lender’s Asian debt capital markets team in March last year, a person familiar with the matter said at the time.

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In other changes announced today, Ashish Malhotra becomes head of Asia DCM, Ranobir Mukherji was appointed vice chairman of Asia DCM and Siong Ooi was named head of Asia-Pacific leveraged finance and loans, according to the memo.

The moves “will provide us with a more focused coverage model across the spectrum of DCM products,” according to the memo, dated today, which was headed as an announcement from Jason Cox and James Fleming, co-heads of Asia-Pacific global capital markets.

A Credit Suisse spokesperson declined to comment on Ashra and Desai’s departures today.

Credit Suisse was hired to arrange investor meetings ahead of a possible U.S. dollar-denominated perpetual bond sale by Catlin Insurance Co., a person familiar with the matter said March 1, asking not to be identified because the details are private.

Malhotra, who has worked for Bank of America since 2005 and was previously head of debt syndicate, is now responsible for investment-grade and high-yield origination across the region, according to the memo. Ooi will focus on origination and syndication of leveraged finance, while Mukherji will work on key client debt origination.

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