A success story everyone wants
Merrill Lynch is the corporate broking success story that everyone wants to replicate. This can clearly be seen from the fact that Morgan Stanley was not the first to decide to go shopping at Merrill for its corporate broking team.
The heads or co-heads of corporate broking at Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, DrKW, and Lehman were all lured from Merrill Lynch for what are believed to be seven-digit salaries.
Merrill quickly rebuilt its team each time and says that it might now be looking at actually expanding it above the level it was at late last April when it was raided.
Nevertheless rivals are waiting to see how, if at all, the defections might affect the bank. Corporate broking relationships can be very personal but the corporate broking relationship, especially with a bulge-bracket investment bank such as Merrill Lynch, is unlikely to be the only important relationship with a client.
This is especially the case with secondary brokerships that are often won on the back of other investment banking relationships.
The peculiarity of corporate broking can make it an uncomfortable fit in many investment banks unfamiliar with the approach to doing business.