January 19, 2018 / 1:01 PM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Credit Suisse Asia Pacific investment banking co-head leaving - sources

* Mervyn Chow leaving Credit Suisse after nearly two decades

* Chow likely leaving to pursue opportunities outside the bank (Adds details, Credit Suisse league table ranking)

HONG KONG, Jan 19 (Reuters) - Credit Suisse Group AG’s Asia Pacific co-head of investment banking and capital markets, Mervyn Chow, is set to leave the bank after nearly two decades, people familiar with the move told Reuters.

Chow was also named chief executive for Greater China in October last year and was leading Credit Suisse’s overall strategy in that region across the bank’s private banking and investment banking platform.

Credit Suisse declined to comment on the move.

Chow, who has held various senior positions at Credit Suisse and was responsible for key client coverage, is leaving Credit Suisse to pursue opportunities outside the Swiss bank, said the people, declining to be named as the move is not public yet.

The veteran dealmaker’s departure from Credit Suisse comes at a time when capital markets and M&A activities in Asia Pacific, mainly in China, are set to pick up this year, amid growing competitive intensity in the investment banking sector.

Credit Suisse ranked sixth in the Asia Pacific, excluding Japan, M&A fee ranking league table in 2017, lagging its global peers including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and UBS, according to Thomson Reuters data.

In the equity capital markets (ECM) business, which includes initial public offerings, the Swiss bank was ranked ninth in the bookrunner’s league table last year, up from 15th in the previous year, the data showed.

In his newly expanded role as CEO for Greater China, which includes Hong Kong, Chow was expected to “deepen and broaden” ties with clients and maintain the bank’s regulatory relationships, said a statement issued in October last year.

It was not immediately clear who will replace Chow at Credit Suisse.

Asia Pacific is a priority region for growth at Switzerland’s second-biggest bank, which is nearing the end of a three-year plan led by its CEO Tidjane Thiam to cut costs and focus the bank more squarely on wealth management. (Reporting by Fiona Lau, Sumeet Chatterjee and Jennifer Hughes; Editing by Keith Weir and Elaine Hardcastle)

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