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RBC Nabs Trio of Credit Suisse Bankers to Expand Tech Franchise

This content was published on July 13, 2021 - 11:00

(Bloomberg) -- Royal Bank of Canada’s RBC Capital Markets hired a trio of senior dealmakers from Credit Suisse Group AG, including Kirk Kaludis as global head of technology investment banking, in a bid to beef up the franchise.

The additions, all in San Francisco, also include Owen Bittinger to serve as co-head of global software alongside RBC’s Ryan Lund, who’s being promoted from overseeing U.S. software deals, according to a memo seen by Bloomberg News. Federico Acabbi is joining as a director, also focused on software.

The hires underscore “our global investment banking leadership’s commitment to investing in talent in support of our continued growth and significant level of deal activity across industry sectors and products,” RBC told staff in the memo signed by U.S. investment banking co-heads Jim Wolfe and Matthew Stopnik, U.K. head Josh Critchley and Canadian head Trevor Gardner. “Our global technology investment banking group is one of our largest sector groups and is at the center of the rapid convergence taking place across our client base.”

They pointed to RBC’s recent work on megadeals including Canadian National Railway Co.’s purchase of Kansas City Southern and the merger of AT&T Inc.’s WarnerMedia division with Discovery Inc.

The three will join after a so-called gardening leave. An RBC spokeswoman confirmed the memo’s contents.

Kaludis started at Credit Suisse in 2017 and most recently was a managing director leading Americas technology investment banking there, the memo shows. He previously was vice chairman and co-head of U.S. technology investment banking at Barclays Plc, after starting his career at predecessor firm Lehman Brothers. He’s worked on initial public offerings for companies including ZoomInfo Technologies Inc. and Unity Software Inc., and on mergers and acquisitions for Cisco Systems Inc., including its $3.2 billion purchase of WebEx, the memo shows. He also advised on AppDynamics Inc.’s $3.7 billion sale to Cisco.

Bittinger, also a managing director, was co-head of global software investment banking. He previously worked at Barclays, Lehman and Citigroup Inc. He has advised companies including Intapp Inc. and Datto Holding Corp. on their IPOs and private equity firms Thoma Bravo and Francisco Partners on transactions.

RBC is looking to accelerate the expansion of its software banking business, which accounts for roughly half of the overall technology fee pool, the RBC executives wrote in their memo. The firm’s former head of technology investment banking, Michael Carter, one of the most prominent Black investment bankers on Wall Street, left in March to join Truist Financial Corp. as the head of its investment and corporate banking teams.

A Credit Suisse spokesman declined to comment. The departures mark the latest in a slew of more than two dozen from the Swiss lender since it was embroiled in loss-making scandals tied to Archegos Capital Management and Greensill Capital. It has selectively offered to payments to some senior executives in an effort to staunch the talent-bleed.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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