CICC powers on
The first investment banking joint venture to be approved by China’s State Council was in 1995. At the time, investment banking was a relatively new concept in China, although since then the industry has grown apace. The same can be said of the joint venture: China International Capital Corporation (CICC).
Today, CICC, whose business stretches across capital markets, M&A advisory, sales and trading, research, asset management and private equity, is one of China’s leading investment banks. Unlike many local securities firms, it practises best international standards, attracts talented people and is focused in what it is doing.
"They are leaps and bounds ahead of us," says an investment banker. "We won’t catch them in the next few years. We view them as the benchmark."
CICC has arranged more than $100 billion in equity financing, more than $20 billion in debt financing and more than $80 billion in M&A in its 12-year history. According to the bank’s senior management, its success can be attributed to its unique shareholding structure. This includes Morgan Stanley, which has a 34.3% stake, Singapore’s Government Investment Corporation (7.35%) and three Chinese backers, two of which are part of the state.
"The shareholders were a great source of strength behind our success, especially in the initial stages of setting up the platform and aligning it with international standards," says Susan Li, head of the strategy coordination committee and vice-chair of CICC’s corporate finance committee.