UBS bets on Ermotti to pull off the deal of the decade
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UBS bets on Ermotti to pull off the deal of the decade

Ralph Hamers, Sergio Ermotti and Colm Kelleher attend a UBS news conference in Zurich on Wednesday. Photo: Reuters

As soon as the ink was dry on the agreement to take over Credit Suisse, UBS chairman Colm Kelleher rushed to bring ex-CEO Sergio Ermotti back to run the bank and the deal. Execution risk is off the charts, and the nerves of shareholders, employees and taxpayers are jangling.

Sunday night, sign the banking deal of the decade; Monday morning, hire a big-name chief executive to run it.

Colm Kelleher does not waste time.

On the evening of Sunday March 19, after five days and nights of intense negotiations with the Swiss government, central bank and financial regulator over terms, the chairman of UBS presented the rescue takeover of Credit Suisse as a “historic day for Switzerland”.

Kelleher struggled to find the right tone between overstatement and understatement, saying: “While we did not initiate discussions, we believe this transaction is attractive for UBS shareholders.”



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Editorial director
Peter Lee is editorial director. He joined Euromoney straight from Oxford University in 1985, and has written about banking and capital markets ever since, being appointed editor in 1999. He became editorial director of Euromoney in May 2005.
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