Credit Suisse prime broking COO escapes to buy-side

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Credit Suisse is cutting costs. If you have the option of leaving the Swiss bank for the buy-side, you might want to avail yourself of it therefore. Ashley Brown, former COO for EMEA in Credit Suisse's prime services division, has done just that.

Brown left Credit Suisse after nearly three years in September and has just become COO at Kairos Investment Management, a London-based asset management firm owned by Julius Baer.

Brown's exit from Credit Suisse comes after changes to the bank's prime broking strategy. U.S.-based Mike Paliotta was appointed global head of prime services in May last year. In January 2016, Paliotta sent a memo saying that Dougal Brech, who ran prime services for Credit Suisse in Europe, was leaving.

Amidst confusion of its strategy for prime services, Credit Suisse has been shifting some of its London prime services, prime financing and securities lending to Dublin. When Credit Suisse CEO Tidjane Thiam unveiled his strategy for the bank last October, he indicated that prime services might be trimmed by putting it in his category for "optimisation." By March, however, the Financial Times noted that Thiam had elevated prime services to, "invest." Brown isn't the only one to leave Credit Suisse's London unit: Adam Karp, a director in prime services sales and coverage, joined Bank of America Merrill Lynch in August.

It's not clear who will be replacing Brown in London. Dublin-based recruiters say Credit Suisse has had problems finding good traders in the Irish capital, so it's doubtful that his role will shifted over there.

Prior to joining Credit Suisse, Brown spent nine years at Morgan Stanley.



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