Credit Suisse Asia PE Banker Leaving

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Credit Suisse (CSGN.VX) banker Ronan Agnew, who moved to Hong Kong last year to run its Asian private equity banking group, plans to leave the bank, he said in an email obtained by Reuters.

Credit Suisse declined to comment.

Agnew becomes yet another top, Asia-based private equity banker to leave, after his Morgan Stanley counterpart departed late last year. In Wall Street terms, private equity banking teams are known as financial sponsor groups.

Credit Suisse’s Toby Groser and Ben Ngai, both directors and members of the financial sponsors unit, will run the team, according to a source familiar with the matter. Groser has been with the bank for 10 years, Ngai came from Citigroup in 2007.

The source did not want to be identified because he was unauthorised to speak publicly about the matter.

Financial sponsors groups have been hit hard by the credit crisis, as loans have dried up for private equity firms, and buying opportunities have also become scarce.

Financial sponsor bankers arrange loans for private equity buyers, present deal ideas and propose exit strategies.

The thought last year was that private equity deal activity would ticking over in Asia, even while the U.S. and European economies suffered. But by late last year, it became clear the Asian economy was not immune to the credit crisis.

(Reporting by Michael Flaherty, Editing by Ken Wills and Dan Lalor)