Celeste Guth has delivered a blow to Deutsche Bank’s rebuilding plan in US corporate finance by resigning from the German lender less than three months after being promoted to run its global mergers and acquisitions department.
Guth, who was also elevated to the investment bank’s executive committee in July, is joining boutique PJT Partners. An insurance specialist, Guth was co-head of the bank’s global financial institutions group in New York until her most recent promotion. At PJT, she will see some familiar faces such as Jacques Brand, the former head of Deutsche’s America’s investment banking business who quit three years ago.
Guth becomes the 18th managing director to leave Deutsche Bank’s US corporate finance operation since the start of the year and the third member of its senior line-up after Mark Hantho and John Eydenberg left for Citi in May.
She is also the most senior Deutsche banker to leave since July, when CEO Christian Sewing announced the bank was retreating from global investment banking, shutting its global equities business and pushing corporate and transaction banking to the fore as core businesses.
Bankers began leaving the bank before the restructuring was announced, in anticipation that Sewing, who became the bank’s fourth CEO since the financial crisis when he replaced predecessor John Cryan last year, would call time on Deutsche’s decades-long quest to become a top-five investment bank in the US.
Deutsche has been on a quest to rebuild the business, recruiting 12 managing directors, but Guth’s departure comes as a big blow as her recent promotion suggested she was committed to Sewing’s plan.
Her resignation means the German bank has now had two global heads of M&A in the space of 18 months after Thomas Piquemal left the bank in May 2018. Following Guth’s departure, Deutsche has reverted to a regional management structure for its M&A business, with existing heads, Mayooran Elalingam (APAC), Bruce Evans (Americas) and Robin Rousseau (EMEA) reporting to Drew Goldman, who has been given an expanded role as global head of investment banking coverage and advisory, according to one source. Deutsche Bank declined to comment.
And while they’re looking to recruit a replacement for Guth, Deutsche’s top brass will also be looking over their shoulders to see who might be the next to walk.
Deutsche was ranked ninth by US investment banking revenues during the first half of the year, up from 10th a year earlier, according to Dealogic.