(Bloomberg) -- William Blair & Co. is strengthening its team of dealmakers in Europe with five hires to expand its advisory capabilities in the region. 

The boutique investment bank has recruited former EY executives Eric Sanschagrin and Daniel Fiegenschuh as managing director and director, respectively, in its technology group. It’s also added Manuel Sammut, most recently at KPMG LLP, as an MD covering tech-enabled services.

Elsewhere, Alex Murrill joins from Robert W. Baird & Co. as an MD to cover specialty distribution, commercial services and industrials, and Shane Dulabdas arrives from Houlihan Lokey Inc. as a director in its debt advisory group. All five will be based in London.

“We’ve been under scale in Europe for too long, especially given how much our advisory business has scaled in North America,” Anu Sharma, William Blair’s head of European investment banking, said in an interview. “Our vision is really to become the premier adviser across Europe.”

The expansion comes at a time when the value of mergers and acquisitions is falling globally, particularly in Europe, and the market for initial public offerings has slowed to a trickle. Dealmakers and their lenders are growing increasingly nervous about the multitude of challenges facing the global economy, from rampant inflation to war in Ukraine. 

“What we’re seeing is a sort of growing dislocation between corporate outlook and investor sentiment,” Sharma said. “This dislocation presents a very good opportunity for strategics, and forward-leaning financial sponsors.”

Like other banks, William Blair is aiming to position itself for a rebound in M&A, including those involving private equity firms with their mountains of dry powder, and deals in the equity capital markets.

“That landscape in Europe is changing,” said Sharma. “Over 50% of issuers have used IPO advisers, so that again is a big opportunity.”

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