IT might not be the busiest of times in Western Australia’s corporate advisory scene, but that has not stopped positive moves by several firms – albeit without much fanfare – that have included the opening of new offices by Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse.
Deutsche Bank appears to have returned to banking in Perth, with markets specialist Grant Gibson coming over from Sydney to head up the new WA operation, which will include investment banking in the near future.
Deutsche Bank closed the door on its investment banking operation in Perth in about 2002. It was then headed by Wayne Zekulich, now at Oakajee Port & Rail, and at one time had as many as five WA staff including Jonathan Shellabear, who now heads Heron Resources. In the 1990s, Deutsche was involved in significant deals such as the Alinta Gas privatisation and the sale of Westrail.
Credit Suisse has also recently started an office in the west with the arrival of Craig Milton, who has returned to WA after six years in Sydney. Credit Suisse has also poached analyst Aaron Kidd from Azure Capital.
Both groups, along with Goldman Sachs, have long been rumoured to be seeking a star local player to provide a launch pad for their proposed Perth operations.
Mark Barnaba was considered an obvious choice but he took a role as WA chair of Macquarie Bank, a broader role than simply investment banking.
In other local news, Maurice Argento has left Euroz after 18 months in its corporate finance division. It is understood he is returning to his management consulting roots in strategic advice. Mr Argento joined Euroz from PwC, which had previously acquired his Mainsheet Corporate business.
He is also a director of mobile technology group Moboom.
Miro Advisers has continued its recent expansion, appointing Chinese national Ling Lai, formerly with BP for 20 years, as its representative in Beijing.
In May, Miro Advisors appointed former Woodside executive Eve Howell to its global advisory panel. Ms Howell is a non-executive director of Downer EDI, Mermaid Marine Australia, the WA Ballet and the Ngarluma & Yindjibarndi Foundation.