What will Deutsche Bank's most golden child do next?
If anyone represents the success of Deutsche Bank past, it's Nick Jansa, the bank's now-former co-head of leveraged finance. Jansa quietly retired/resigned last month while everyone was on the beach. This was a big deal: his career at Deutsche was long and it was illustrious.
Until he was promoted to run EMEA corporate finance in the wake of Alasdair Warren's ejection in September 2018, Jansa was Deutsche's head of global leveraged finance. As such, he presided over one of the bank's most successful business areas. Dealogic said DB ranked fifth globally for leveraged finance revenues in the first of 2019; year to date it ranks second in Europe, behind BNP Paribas.
CEO Christian Sewing aside, it's hard to find a more committed Deutsche Bank-man than Jansa. He joined the German bank in 1995, around the same time as Edson Mitchell and Anshu Jain. His first five years were spent in London, his next five were in the U.S. In 2005 he moved back to London and within another five years he was head of 'European leveraged debt capital markets.' In 2015 he was promoted as co-global head of leveraged DCM with Sean Murphy, with Murphy based in the U.S. Murphy is still with Deutsche, according to his FINRA registration.
On paper, Jansa seems the sort of person Deutsche might quite like to keep. Leveraged finance is one of Deutsche's best businesses and is therefore a vector to some of the top roles in the organization. Jansa's predecessor as global head of lev fin, Mark Fedorcik, was appointed head of the investment bank globally in July 2019. In November 2018, Fedorcik informed Bloomberg that Deutsche wanted to be a lead arranger globally of leveraged loans again. However, leveraged loans are definitionally risk and Sewing may have different ideas under his new strategy for DB.
Despite Jansa's retirement/resignation, he appears to be working his notice period. Deutsche declined to comment for this article, but Jansa is understood to still be somewhere in London Wall and to be leaving sometime in the coming months. Headhunters say he should have no problem finding alternatives on either the buy-side or sell-side (if he's still inclined to work). In 2017 he was allegedly eyed-up by HSBC before it hired J.P. Morgan veteran Ray Doody as head of leveraged and acquisition finance in 2017. At the time Deutsche allegedly locked Jansa in with a pay rise, before promoting him to head of corporate finance in 2018.
One year ago, therefore, Jansa was Deutsche's favourite. Now the German bank will have to do without him. It should at least save some money as a result - Jansa almost certainly ranked among the 27 people earning over €5m in 2018. Presumably he will get to leave with his unvested stock - unlike some in the CRU (Deutsche's winddown unit).
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