Babson Capital Europe appointed Andrew Godson as head of distribution. Godson will be responsible for Babson Capital Europe's global sales and distribution activities as well as distributing Babson Capital Management products to European investors. He reports to Ian Hazelton, chief executive of Babson Capital Europe. Godson was previously at Citigroup, where he ran the CDO syndicate and structured credit in Europe. Before Citi, Godson spent three years working in the securitization group at Nomura, where he focused on CDO structuring and esoteric ABS.
Kevin Kanouff has resigned from his position as president of Clayton Fixed Income Services, the Denver-based subsidiary of data analysis provider Clayton Holdings. Kanouff has served as the President of Clayton Fixed Income Services since 2003. He was responsible for the management of the division's operations and the development of its strategic direction. Before joining Clayton Fixed Income Services, Kanouff was an attorney practicing corporate and securities law with Dorsey & Whitney, an international law firm.
Greylock Capital Management has hired A.J. Mediratta as senior managing director. Before joining Greylock, Mediratta was head of emerging markets debt capital markets at Bear Stearns, where he worked since 1997 and started as an associate director in debt capital markets. During his term, Bear carved out a niche in the Caribbean and Central America, specializing in sub-investment-grade deals that straddle the line between project finance and ABS. This has often meant that its deals don't appeal to the same structured finance investors in emerging markets with a predilection for wrapped or investment-grade paper from countries such as Brazil and Turkey. Before Bear Stearns, Mediratta worked as a director in Credit Lyonnais Securities.
The Commercial Mortgage Securities Association (CMSA) - Europe has announced that Jaymon Jones will become its director of strategic initiatives. Jones will report to Carol Wilkie, managing director at CMSA-Europe, and will be responsible for managing CMSA-Europe's industry-related initiatives. Before joining CMSA, Jones was a vice president at Morgan Stanley Mortgage Servicing and was chair of the European association's investor reporting package (IRP) committee.
The last day for Bear Stearns Chief U.S. Economist and Senior Managing Director John Ryding, who has been with the company for 17 years, and Senior Economist and Managing Director Conrad DeQuadros will be June 30. In a letter to clients sent out on June 6, Ryding said, "For our remaining days, we will help transition you to JPMorgan's research (www.morganmarkets.com). We look forward to sharing our insights with you again on July 1, and we will send you our contact details when they are available."
Freshfields Bruckhaus De-ringer will open an office in Abu Dhabi, bolstering the firm's presence in the Middle East. Freshfields already counts more than 40 lawyers based in the firm's offices in Dubai, Bahrain and, shortly, Abu Dhabi, as well as Saudi Arabia through Freshfields' association with Fares Al-Hejailan. Partner Charles July will head the Abu Dhabi office and, with a team of lawyers, will provide a full-service offering with a focus on key areas such as corporate, dispute resolution, energy-related projects, financial products, infrastructure development and real estate.
Lloyds TSB Corporate Markets made new hires to its structured trade finance team. According to market reports, the recent hires will focus on payment undertaking guarantees, structured pre-export finance, commodity finance working capital and the provision of borrowing base facilities. Mario Mazzochi is head of the group. Jon Hollick has been hired from Mizuho Corporate Bank to be a director within the origination team, and Nick Lang has joined from Sumitomo and Mitsui as a credit director.
American Mortgage Accep-tance Company (AMAC) has named Donald Meyer chief executive officer of the company, as well as a board of trustees member, effective July 1. Meyer will replace former AMAC CEO and trustee of the Board Larry Duggins, who will retire on June 30 to attend Southern Methodist University and to launch non-profit youth-oriented foundations. Meyer will continue his role as executive managing director and chief investment officer at Centerline Capital Group, a subsidiary of Centerline Holding Co.
BNP Paribas has appointed Benjamin Jacquard to head structured credit and arbitrage trading in London, according to published reports. This role includes creating and selling CDOs. Jacquard replaces Stephane Delacote, who left earlier this year, and will report to global head of fixed-income trading Guillaume Amblard. Jacquard joins BNP Paribas from Credit Agricole's investment banking arm Calyon, where he headed structure credit.
The American Securitization Forum (ASF) announced last week the election of its 2008-2009 board of directors, executive officers, committee and sub-forum chairs and deputy chairs. Sanjeev Handa, head of global public markets at TIAA-CREF, Jason Kravitt, senior partner in the securitization practice at Mayer Brown, and Diane Citron, general counsel at Carrington Capital Management, continue in their roles as chair, deputy chair and secretary, respectively, until the completion of their current terms on June 30, 2010, according to a release from the association. Michael Sternberg, managing director at Morgan Stanley, was newly elected to the position of treasurer with a term that expires June 30, 2011. Ralph Daloisio, managing director at Natixis, was elected as an executive vice president with a term expiring June 30, 2011. G. Whitfield McDowell, managing director at Bank of America, and Lawrence Rubenstein, general counsel at Wells Fargo Asset Securities Corp., continue in their roles as executive vice presidents through June 30, 2010, and June 30, 2009, respectively. The elections were held last week during a meeting of the ASF's Board of Directors in New York City, coinciding with ASF's 2008 annual meeting.
Northern Rock and Lloyds TSB announced an agreement to transfer customers. The deal will allow those "who meet certain credit criteria" to easily refinance into a fixed-rate product with Lloyds at a reduced cost over the next three years. The agreement will allow refinancing to occur slightly faster as borrowers refinance at the earliest opportunity. Societe Generale analysts said the news is seen as credit neutral, as the cherry picking of Northern Rock's Granite master trust collateral would have occurred naturally.
XL Capital announced last week that it was not involved in a summary judgment handed down by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York favoring Merrill Lynch. Merrill Lynch filed a complaint against Security Capital Assurance (SCA) subsidiary XL Capital Assurance (XLCA) that relates to certain credit default swap transactions that were entered into by trusts and insured by XLCA following SCA's IPO in August 2006. XLCA is not a subsidiary of XL Capital. The swaps at issue in the lawsuit were entered into by XLCA after SCA's IPO. XL Insurance (Bermuda) reinsurance guarantee to a subsidiary of SCA applies only to pre-IPO exposures, according to a release from XL Capital. Pursuant to a transition agreement entered into at the time of SCA's IPO, SCA is permitted to use the "XL" name until August 2008. XL owns roughly 46% of the common equity interest of SCA. Since the dispute above is between Merrill Lynch and XLCA, any queries about the lawsuit should be referred directly to the parties involved in the lawsuit. In terms of the ruling, U.S. District Court Judge Jed Rakoff ruled on Tuesday that XLCA will have to stand by $3.1 billion of guarantees on CDOs. In a summary judgment, Rakoff ruled that Merrill Lynch had not repudiated its obligations under seven of the CDOs it entered with XLCA, and that XLCA's attempt to end those swaps was invalid. The judge, who said that he would give reasons for his ruling at a later date, dismissed three XLCA counterclaims as requested by Merrill as well.
A survey by Savills Research found 53 lenders remain willing to lend on U.K. property, including 17 that will lend more than GBP50 million ($98 million). The LTVs have been much reduced from their peak levels with many banks seeing opportunities to achieve solid returns on equity. The fact that lending remains available is a positive for CMBS, allowing refinancing when increased equity is available to maintain lower LTVs. Lenders would typically also seek stronger interest coverage ratios to provide loan security. They will have much stronger collateral relatively when comparing new LTVs with ones from early to mid-2007.
Interdealer broker ICAP will begin offering its centralized, focused voice-broking service to the structured credit market. A company spokesperson said that the "matched principal" broking service will help structured credit market clients to execute transactions in full anonymity, which should prove appealing given the illiquid and difficult markets. Vincent van Mackelenbergh, Frederik Veger and Joost Bonarius, formerly at NIBC bank, will be setting up the new trading desk at ICAP. Their diverse backgrounds will help establish client relationships, the spokesperson said. The broking service will be offered on a note-by-note basis or on entire portfolios. The team will broker cash ABS, CDOs and CLOs from triple-A to equity.
The British Bankers Asso-ciation (BBA) made some changes to how it calculates interbank lending or Libor rates, which were announced last week. BBA said that it will widen the range of the institutions it surveys to ensure that it is not only the banks with the best credit ratings that contribute, and it will also more closely examine the rates banks give. BBA will also consider whether a second rate-fixing process for U.S. dollar Libor should be introduced.
National City Corp. said last week that it has reached confidential agreements with regulators that deal with managing capital, risk and liquidity. The Cleveland-based firm stated last Tuesday that it entered a memorandum of understanding with the Comptroller of the Currency on May 5 and the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland on April 29. However, NatCity said it will not be releasing the agreements. Last May, National City got a $7 billion capital infusion from equity investors.
Toronto-based ratings agency DBRS last week unveiled a new leveraged finance rating methodology, which will be used in rating all speculative-grade corporate debt. The methodology uses traditional credit ratings, plus newly introduced recovery ratings, to capture an issuer's risk of default and the impact of default on its debt.
(c) 2008 Asset Securitization Report and SourceMedia, Inc. All Rights Reserved.