Credit Suisse to merge asset management into private banking unit

Credit Suisse confirmed today it will merge its asset management division into its private bank unit, which will form the Private Banking & Wealth Management division, headed by Hans-Ulrich Meister and Robert Shafir.

The investment banking securities platform in Switzerland will be moved into Private Banking & Wealth Management, and the Solution Partners group will also report jointly to  Meister and Shafir.

Meister will run the Swiss franchise and the Private Banking client businesses in Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) and Asia Pacific.

This includes offshore and onshore Swiss Private Banking with the segments Wealth Management & Private Clients Switzerland, Premium Clients Switzerland & Global External Asset Managers and Corporate & Institutional Clients.

Shafir will take responsibility for all private banking and asset management operations in the Americas.

Following the restructuring, Credit Suisse has eliminated the role of chief executive for Asia Pacific and EMEA. Osama Abbasi and Fawzi Kyriakos-Saad, former chief executives for those two regions, will leave the bank.

Meanwhile, the firm promoted fixed-income executive Gael de Boissard to co-run its investment bank with Eric Varvel, effective at the beginning of January.

The official announcement follows the bank’s decision to cut CHF1bn of costs to strengthen its profits and capital position.

“We have restructured our investment banking model resulting in a high returning, lower risk, client oriented business. Our private banking model is highly scalable and suited for the new regulatory environment. And we have sharpened the focus of our Asset Management business. The changes announced today represent the next step in the continued development of our businesses towards achieving the targets that we have laid out,” said Brady Dougan, chief executive at the Swiss bank.

He added: “This streamlined structure will produce further synergies and help reduce expenses across the bank. And the alignment of regional and divisional management supports our integrated bank structure, driving cross-divisional and cross-regional collaboration and revenue opportunities.”

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