Abigail Hofman: Banking's rising stars
As mentioned in a previous column, I am often asked who the market’s rising stars are. So I have decided to feature, from time to time, certain financiers whose careers have momentum and about whom you will hear a lot more in the next few years.
António Horta Osório, chief executive of Santander UK and member of the management committee of Banco Santander. Aged 46, Horta Osório, who is Portuguese, has worked for the Santander group for some 17 years. His career has included postings in Portugal and Brazil as well as a brief period at Goldman Sachs. Admired for steering the bank’s UK operations, the former Abbey National, through the choppy credit crunch waters, he was appointed to the prestigious Court of the Bank of England in 2009. He was also honoured by the King of Spain last year for improving friendship and cooperation between Spain and the international community. Educated in Portugal and with an MBA from Insead, Horta Osório combines a warm personality with an obsession for the details of his business. I expect him to play an even more prominent role in European banking in the next few years: good commercial bankers are hard to find, as the board of Bank of America knows only too well.
Rachid Bouzouba, co-head of global equities, Nomura. Recently promoted to his current role, Bouzouba, aged 40, was a rising star at Lehman Brothers, Europe, before the business was purchased by Nomura in October 2008. Described by a source as "one of the top 10 equity specialists in the world," Bouzouba now joins the senior management team of the new chief executive of Nomura’s wholesale business, Jesse Bhattal, and will be based in Hong Kong. Educated in France, Bouzouba is building a strong European and Asian equities franchise: Nomura is the number one equities broker on both the London and the Tokyo stock exchanges and Bouzouba is determined to increase Nomura’s profile in US equities. I will watch Bouzouba’s career with interest.
Marisa Drew, managing director, Credit Suisse. In her mid-40s, Drew is co-head of the global markets solutions group in EMEA and co-head of the debt advisory and restructuring group. With a strong expertise in leveraged finance, she spent 11 years at Merrill Lynch before joining Credit Suisse in 2003. A US citizen, who has lived in London for 10 years, Drew has an MBA from Wharton. She is unpretentious and passionate about her job. She is a strong advocate of diversity in investment banking and is a member of the C200, an organization of top women in business worldwide. I expect Drew will continue to rise within Credit Suisse.
Finally, this month I heard a nice story about the chief executive of Credit Suisse’s investment bank. Apparently, Chief called to speak to a desk head in London and was told by a junior employee that he was away from the desk. "Fine," said Chief. " Please have him call me. It’s Paul Calello. I’ll spell that for you: CALELLO." In this era of grandiose pomposity, it’s reassuring that some banking titans remain modest and unassuming.
It certainly appears as if Planet Finance is thriving once again – notwithstanding public hostility, bonus taxes and politicians baying for blood.
Credit Suisse’s Performance Incentive Plan (PIP) paid out and some lucky bankers became very rich indeed. I’m not talking 'buy a magnum of champagne' rich.
For the moment, Goldman will no longer be the safe choice or even the first choice for clients.
I am often asked who the market’s rising stars are.
How was your month? Please send news and views to Abigail@euromoney.com