Stifel’s KBW Hires Chawhan From BofA as Dealmaking Accelerates

Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, the investment bank purchased by Stifel Financial Corp., hired Neil Chawhan from Bank of America Corp.’s Merrill Lynch to work on insurance deals as consolidation accelerates in the industry.

Chawhan is based in New York and was named a managing director, KBW said in a statement Tuesday. Chawhan was most recently in the financial institutions group at Merrill and focused on transactions and capital raising, KBW said.

Stifel acquired the investment bank in 2013 and has been reshaping its equity-research and acquisition-advisory teams. KBW, which focuses on the finance industry, promoted Seth Bair last year to co-head U.S. insurance investment banking and hired Ryan Krueger from Dowling & Partners as an analyst.

“KBW continues to grow its businesses by investing in quality talent and we are thrilled to have someone with Neil’s experience on our team,” Peter J. Wirth, the firm’s co-head of global investment banking, said in the statement.

Insurance acquisitions have picked up this year as companies seek to expand their scale and diversify risks. Ace Ltd. agreed in July to buy Chubb Corp. for about $28 billion. Turin-based investment firm Exor SpA said it will purchase reinsurer PartnerRe Ltd. for more than $6 billion.

A representative for Bank of America didn’t immediately respond to a message seeking comment.