Hong Kong: Bank of America Merrill Lynch has poached UBS’s Asia mergers-and-acquisitions (M&A) head Stephen Gore to helm its M&A unit for the Asia-Pacific region excluding Japan, said two sources familiar with the matter.
UBS has the more successful mergers franchise in the region, league table data show, but the loss of Gore will deal a blow to its standing. To rub salt on the wound, the 19-year UBS veteran’s move marks yet another high-profile departure from the Swiss bank to its American rival since last year.
A spokesman for UBS confirmed that Gore had left the bank, but could not immediately say if his successor has been identified.
A Bank of America spokesman did not offer any immediate comment, while Gore could not be reached for comment.
Recent arrivals at Bank of America include its Asia president Matthew Koder, who joined from UBS last year, and Alex Wilmott-Sitwell, who in April made the same switch to be the US bank’s president of Europe and emerging markets ex-Asia.
The traffic between the banks has not all been one-way, with Bank of America losing top Europe dealmaker Andrea Orcel to UBS in March. Orcel joined UBS as co-head of its investment bank.
The hiring of Gore raises the question of what becomes of David Killingback, whom Bank of America named in an internal memo as recently as January as its new Asia Pacific ex-Japan M&A head, the role that Gore is now taking up.
Bank of America did not immediately return calls for comment on this issue.
Gore headed UBS’s financial sponsors coverage in Asia from 2007 to April 2009, when he took over as Asia M&A head to replace the promoted Matthew Hanning.
UBS stood at No.5 in the Asia-Pacific ex-Japan M&A league table for the year to date, according to Thomson Reuters data, having worked on 23 deals, up from No. 7 at the same time last year.
Bank of America on the other hand has slipped to No. 9 this year, falling from No. 4 at the same time last year. Reuters