December 6, 2023

Investment Banking

Let Your Investment Banking Do The Walking

Credit Suisse Poised to Name Edwin Low as Asia CEO in Overhaul

(Bloomberg) — Credit Suisse Group AG is poised to replace Asia-Pacific Chief Executive Officer Helman Sitohang with regional investment bank co-head Edwin Low as part of broader management changes across its global operations following major setbacks, people familiar with the matter said.

Sitohang will remain with the bank and take on a role focused on client coverage, one person said. A final sign-off on the succession plan is still pending, according to the people, who asked not to be named as the information is confidential. Low has been co-head of investment banking and capital markets since 2015 and is also CEO of southeast Asia. 

Credit Suisse, which shocked investors last week with its fifth profit warning in six quarters, has been shaking up its top ranks after the scandals linked to the collapse of Greensill Capital and Archegos Capital Management triggered billions of dollars in losses. The bank drove through a global overhaul in November to reassert centralized control over risk management, simplifying reporting lines and creating four global units that removed the regional autonomy that Asia, and Sitohang, had enjoyed.

A spokesperson for the lender declined to comment, pointing to a statement on the bank continuing to implement its new strategy and organizational structure. As part of this, the bank’s management is regularly discussing succession plans and reviewing senior appointments, though no board decisions have been taken, the statement said. Sitohang and Low couldn’t be reached for comment.

Senior management has closely examined the bank’s books in Asia over the past few months as part of the effort to clean up exposures and derisk following the Archegos debacle, one of the people said. 

Sitohang has been Asia CEO since 2015 and before that was head of the investment bank in the region. Low joined Credit Suisse as a first year associate in 1996 and has worked his way up.

The bank is also considering replacing top lawyer Romeo Cerutti and Chief Financial Officer David Mathers, according to other people familiar with the matter.  

Credit Suisse has repaid $6.7 billion to investors in supply-chain funds hurt by the collapse of Greensill. In 2020, the bank conducted an internal review into the funds and potential conflicts of interest involving Softbank Group Corp, one of its key Asian clients at the time. A number of its portfolio companies received loans via the supply-chain funds at Credit Suisse, while Softbank was an investor in the Swiss lender’s funds.

Credit Suisse was also among the biggest lenders to the founder of Luckin Coffee Inc., a Chinese coffee chain which in 2020 become embroiled in a scandal over fabricated revenue.  

The lender last week said it would post a loss in the first quarter on additional charges from long-standing legal disputes and charges in Russia.  

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