Trading Places: HSBC, Credit Suisse, Jupiter plan cuts, Kirkland scores two London partners


After a bumper year for banks in 2021, it looks like it’s job cuts time again.

HSBC is trimming UK bankers as layoffs gain pace, while Credit Suisse’s the latest plans to overhaul its investment bank will likely lead to hundreds of cuts. To soften the blow to top workers, it plans to roll out retention bonuses for UK dealmakers.

Jupiter plans to ax some 80 staff amid an overhaul of the asset manager. Peer Brooks Macdonaldupped salaries for some of its lowest-paid staffers in a bid to keep hold of them while the cost of living continues to spiral.

Wells Fargo returned to the hiring trail, adding three senior dealmakers to its roster. Mark Hutt is set to join as head of UK M&A, Mathieu Gross will become head of continental European investment banking, while Kelvin Siah is joining Wells Fargo as head of Southern Asian M&A, based in Singapore.

Fidelity International hired Newton’s Ilga Haubelt as head of equities for Europe. She will be based in London to build out new strategies and ensure sustainability is integrated into the manager’s funds. Haubelt was formerly head of equity income and senior portfolio manager at Newton. She moved to London in 2019 after working for Union Investment Privatfonds and Deka Investments in Germany.

Legal & General Investment Management is opening an office in Zurich, and hired Mauro Gerli as head of institutional for Switzerland. The new base will open on October 1 as part of a European expansion push, and will be headed up by Gerli, who has worked at Swiss Re, Man Group and Credit Suisse.

Federated Hermes hired Michalis Ditsas as an investment director within its fixed-income division. Joining from AllianceBernstein, Ditsas will be a client-facing representative for all the asset manager’s fixed income strategies across public and private markets.

The real estate team of Schroders Capital appointed Peter Lowe as a senior fund manager in the UK, responsible for oversight of approximately £4bn of Scottish Widows strategies the UK asset manager onboarded in May.

In the newly created role, Lowe will be responsible for fund performance and strategy. He joins from Columbia Threadneedle, where he was responsible for managing the Columbia Threadneedle Property Trust.

In the legal world, US heavyweight Kirkland & Ellis picked up not one, but two new partners in London. Kirkland hired Allen & Overy’s global infrastructure co-head Sara Pickersgill — an M&A partner — to establish a European infrastructure and energy practice. It also announced that it hired finance partner James Boswell from Clifford Chance as a debt finance partner.

Meanwhile, Clifford Chance said it was hiring corporate partner Dominic Ross from the US firm White & Case in London. Ross’ recent deals include representing FTSE100 cyber security business Avast on its $9.2bn merger with software company NortonLifeLock.

Dechert’s Colin Sharpsmith also returned to the firm as a partner in the financial services and investment management practice, based in London. Sharpsmith was an associate at the firm before moving to Kirkland, and had previously worked at Withers and Travers Smith in a broad-ranging financial services regulation practice.

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