(Bloomberg) -- UniCredit SpA Chief Executive Officer Andrea Orcel intends to hire as many as 50 investment bankers to capture more business from medium-sized corporate clients, pushing the lender further into a hotly-contested market.
The bank is seeking staff to strengthen advisory services and boost its offering of investment banking products to companies across its European network, people with knowledge of the matter said. UniCredit could also acquire focused, boutique firms to speed up the process if opportunities arise, the people said, asking to not be named because the matter isn’t public.
A spokesman for UniCredit declined to comment.
Orcel, a former UBS investment banker who took over as UniCredit CEO in April, is driving Italy’s second-largest lender into new growth areas while negotiating a complex takeover of the troubled Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA. Seeking to serve smaller-company needs will pit him against global investment-bank titans like Goldman Sachs Group Inc,. which are expanding their efforts beyond the largest corporate clients.
Read More: UniCredit Hires Ex-UBS Top U.S. Investment Banker Kendall
The new staff will be part of a team under veteran investment banker Sam Kendall, said the people. Kendall, also formerly at UBS Group AG, was hired by the head of corporate and investment bank division Richard Burton last month to oversee UniCredit’s industry coverage, advisory, as well as public and private equity and debt capital markets.
Orcel, who’s due to unveil a new business plan before the end of the year, has already made changes to the management structure as part of an overhaul aimed at reducing complexity.
UniCredit’s corporate and investment banking division, with about 3200 employees, offers a range of transaction services, structured finance, capital markets and investment products to its clients, with a particular focus on mid-cap corporates.
Record deal-making levels have stretched investment banking teams thin over the past 18 months, leading to pay rises across the industry.
©2021 Bloomberg L.P.