Kevin White, Lehman Brothers' global head of securitized products syndicate, is leaving the group, but not the bank. He will head up the sales team in the bank's institutional client group.
Merrill Lynch has hired Paul Chu as vice president of its global asset backed finance team. Based in Hong Kong and reporting to David Kahm, Chu will focus on Asian asset-backed and principal finance opportunities. Chu joins from Linklaters, where he had since June 2005 been a managing associate in the law firm's Asian structured finance practice. Despite his legal background, Chu had previously had a stint in Credit Suisse's Asian securitization team in the early part of the decade.
Rumor has it that John Pang has left his role as head of Asian ABS at HVB to join Standard Bank in the same role. The South African bank has arranged one public securitization in Asia, the noteworthy HK$257 million ($33 million) negative equity RMBS by Pan Asian Mortgage Co. late in 2004 (ASR, 11/22/04). Despite being a global first, follow-up deals have been hard to come by and the hiring of Pang is an attempt to address this. At HVB, Pang headed a team that was one of the dominant arrangers in Singaporean CMBS, one of ex-Japan Asia's most active asset classes. It is understood a couple of junior members of the group will follow Pang to Standard Bank. Officials at Standard Bank and HVB were not available for comment as of press time.
Allen & Overy announced last week that Howard Goldwasser and Lawton Camp have joined the firm as partners. The new hires are part of the capital markets practice, adding to the firm's existing New York-based 15-lawyer team focusing on structured finance deals and securitizations. Goldwasser and Camp were previously at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe where they were involved in a broad range of structured finance and securitization transactions, including various cash and synthetic CDOs; CMBS and RMBS; synthetic ABS; emerging market future-flow deals; credit card, trade, lease and consumer finance receivables securitizations; as well as various other derivative, structured finance and securitization instruments and products. Goldwasser was a partner at Orrick in 1999 and became resident in the firm's Tokyo office from 2001 to 2005. He was the managing partner of the office and headed the firm's Asian securitization and structured finance practices before returning to the U.S. in September 2005. Camp became a partner at Orrick in 2001, spending his entire career in its New York office.
GSC Partners last week announced the appointment of Thomas Dial as vice president in its structured finance group. Dial will be a portfolio manager and structurer of CDOs and whole loan securitizations and will be reporting to Frederick Horton, senior managing director and head of the structured finance group at GSC. The new hire has over twelve years of experience in structured finance and ABS. He joins GSC from Natexis Banques Populaires, where he was the senior member of the CDO team that managed a $500 million mezzanine CDO portfolio, made up of corporate cash flow, market value and ABS CDOs. Before that, he was an executive director in the asset securitization group at CIBC World Markets, participating in CDO structuring and conduit securitizations. He also served as a vice president in the financial analytics structuring and transaction group at Bear Stearns and as an associate in the taxable fixed-income group at Smith Barney. Dial started his career trading residential whole loans for Principal Asset Markets, a division of Principal Mutual Life.
Radian Guaranty hired Russell Johnson as senior vice president in loss management. Johnson will focus on the company's approach to mitigating and managing losses on defaulted loans. His responsibilities include default reporting, loss mitigation, claims processing and investigative services. Johnson most recently served as senior vice president and director of servicing operations at American Residential Equities, where he managed distressed pools of mortgage loans and instituted processes to enhance their profitability. Prior to that, Johnson was the vice president and national servicing manager at Washington Mutual Bank, where he was responsible for servicing a subprime mortgage portfolio in excess of $15 billion.
DB Trust Company Ltd. Japan has appointed Keiji Kitase as its president and representative director. Kitase's background includes working in syndicated loans, structured finance and other capital raisings for both Japanese and international clients while working at Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corp. since 1988. Kitase also has experience working on ABS and MBS transactions. He most recently worked in Singapore advising Japanese and local clients on capital raising and asset liquidity.
Clifford Chance is said to be working on a deal in the U.S. that will employ U.K. technology. The transaction is expected to begin marketing by autumn this year, said a market source, who added that although regulatory and accounting details still have to be worked out, all parties on the transaction have been retained. The deal is expected to be sizable.
Nomura International launched its European Funds Group (EFG) last week. Nomura will invest 325 million ($407 million) of equity capital in EFG, which will act as a cornerstone investor in and advisor to a series of strategic funds. The strategic funds will initially focus on real estate and mezzanine assets and third party investors will be invited to participate in each.
Wachovia Corp. said last Tuesday it plans to acquire American Property Financing, a subsidiary of Emigrant Bank. New York-based American Property has a multifamily loan portfolio exceeding $8 billion and is a top Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac lender. The deal is expected to close in 2Q06.American Property chief executive Alan Wiener will stay on and will head Wachovia's multifamily lending business with managing director Ed Hurley. Wachovia provided more than $67 billion in commercial mortgages in 2005. It also services about $198 billion in CMBS and agency mortgages and $40 billion in portfolio loans.
Freddie Mac's retained portfolio jumped at a 17.2% annual rate last month to $715.4 billion. Thus far in 2006, Freddie's portfolio increased by 0.8%. Despite the significant portfolio increase, the GSE did not increase it non-agency security holdings, which remained at $243 billion.
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