May 18, 2007 / 10:50 AM / 12 years ago

Another top UBS banker quits amid lending debate

LONDON, May 18 (Reuters) - The vice chairman of UBS UBSN.VX global investment banking, Hartmuth Jung, is leaving to pursue other opportunities, becoming the latest in a spate of recent defections from the Swiss bank.

Jung, who helped build up the bank’s German operations, was made vice chairman in October 2003. He joined UBS in 2000 from Credit Suisse First Boston and will continue to advise UBS, the bank said on Friday.

UBS investment bank president Ken Moelis, a veteran deal maker who helped build the bank into a top M&A player over the past six years, quit in March. His departure was announced just five days after investment banking co-head Jeff McDermott also had resigned.

“It just seems to me what’s going on at UBS is their corporate philosophy is not aligned with where the investment banking business is, particularly in principal risk taking, equity bridge financing and leverage lending,” Atlantic Equities bank analyst Joseph Dickerson said.

“It seems like the firm isn’t ready to step up in those activities and I think that’s why you’re seeing these people leave.”

UBS nevertheless is the top M&A adviser in Europe so far this year with a 39.3 percent market share and No. 2 in Asia with 20.1 percent share, behind only Morgan Stanley. It is No. 9 in the United States with 15 percent, according to Thomson Financial.

“UBS is an active and competitive participant in the leveraged finance business,” a bank spokesman said.

“We have a top 10 position we want to maintain, but at this point of the cycle we are not looking to be a number two or number three player.”

Among other defections, Swiss rival Credit Suisse CSGN.VX also poached Russell Chambers, a managing director in UBS’ investment banking divsion, earlier this year, and just last week its head of European media investment banking, Adam Joy, left with colleague David Curley to join advisory boutique Ingenious.

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