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BANKING

Visor declares a state of independence

Kazakh investment banking boutique Visor Capital believes it can offer clients a bridge between local and international markets. It is looking to open up new avenues for corporates and international investors alike. Can it compete with the more established competition?

Emerging markets around the globe are rightly famous – or should that be notorious? – for coming up with the most unlikely tales of daring do and twists of fate.

Imagine if you will that it’s winter 2005 and you’re a German working at a US bank in London. One day you receive a call out of the blue from a Dane you’ve never met who’s been living in India running an IT company and who wants you to up sticks and come and work with him in central Asia.

Well, what would do you do? Stick with the safe option of a relatively steady job at a blue-chip institution in western Europe or decide to go take a punt – albeit a highly educated one – on making a financial killing in one of the world’s most dynamic but still relatively economically undeveloped regions? Decisions, decisions.

Fast forward to August 2006 and German-born ex-JPMorgan banker Stefan Scholz is laughing with Danish-born ex-Kring Technologies executive Michael Sauer about the fact that they’re both now living and working in Kazakhstan.

Sauer, who put in the call to London, is now the chief executive of Visor Capital, an investment banking boutique established on January 1 2006; Scholz is its head of corporate finance.

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