Collardi: «Not Amused» at CS Woes

Boris Collardi, CEO Julius Baer (Picture: Keystone)

Boris Collardi, CEO Julius Baer (Picture: Keystone)

Julius Baer boss Boris Collardi spent the first 11 years of his career at Credit Suisse. What does he think of the Swiss bank's current troubles, and is Baer benefiting by picking off bankers and teams?

Julius Baer CEO Boris Collardi is one of a host of former Credit Suisse bankers who have migrated to the smaller rival, including the Asia head Jimmy Lee.

Credit Suisse is currently in the midst of a wide-ranging restructuring, that includes splitting off its Swiss unit ahead of listing a minority stake to shareholders.

Credit Suisse CEO Tidjane Thiam recently had an embarrassingly public revolt of investment bankers to deal with, which has led a major shareholder to advise him to soften his tone. Adding insult to injury, the bank's shares are scraping historic lows.

Julius Baer Benefits – and Suffers

What does this mean for Julius Baer?

«The short answer is, we all benefit from what's going on at Credit Suisse and at the same time we all suffer from it,» Collardi said on Monday.

«Every one of us has an interest that Credit Suisse or other institutions are strong because we want the financial center and sector to be a strong one, so we're certainly not amused to see what is going on right now.»

Wounded Credit Suisse

Julius Baer has already hired more than 200 private bankers in the past six months – the bulk in Asia after Baer installed Lee as head of its Asian activities in January – which represents very strong recruiting efforts.

Collardi denied however that this hiring has come solely at the expense of Credit Suisse, which has seen a series of high-level changes and prominent exits following the restructuring.

No Targeted Credit Suisse Exodus

Of the more than 200 bankers, Collardi said he could not say they were hired exclusively from Credit Suisse. They come from several, large banks, he said.

«It's evenly distributed, so we don't see a targeted exodus from Credit Suisse. We're not seeing anything different from the past: we see good relationship managers and good client managers looking for a home,» Collardi said.


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