Credit Suisse to Move Investment Banking Hub to Madrid

The bank earlier considered dividing its European investment banking operations into two cities.

Credit Suisse is planning to move its investment banking hub to Spain from its current London headquarters as a part of its post-Brexit plans.

As reported by Spanish news agency Expansion, the Swiss bank’s chief for Spain and Portugal, Wenceslao Bunge, revealed that the bank is now seeking approval from the Bank of Spain and the European Central Bank to upgrade its brokerage permission to banking license.

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“We believe in the country and the advantages it offers. Spain has a very important competitiveness position,” Bunge told the newspaper.

Though the bank previously wanted to move its investment banking operations to two separate cities, Madrid and Frankfurt, it now has decided to only go with the former.

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However, the decision still seems to be in the nascent stage as the bank did not decide on the number of staff to be housed in the new investment banking headquarters in Spain. 

Doubling Chinese Headcount

The Swiss bank is also targeting to expand its Asian presence by doubling its staff in China over the next five years. The Chinese operation of the bank offers services including financing, trading, wealth, and asset management to wealthy investors. The securities venture alone employed 154 staff by the end of last year.

“China is our strongest focus when it comes to headcount, and infrastructure growth compared to any country in the world,” Credit Suisse Asia CEO, Helman Sitohang told Bloomberg. “The worst of Covid’s impact on the region’s business activity is behind us.”

The bank is considering to only focus on the mainland’s wealthy investors, and thus, it is only planning to expand its advisory and investment banking services.

Last month, Finance Magnates reported on the decision of the Swiss bank to merge its investment banking unit and capital markets unit, a split that was made five years ago. The decision was propelled by the losses posted by the investment banking unit over the last few quarters.

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