Magazine article American Banker

At IMC in Paris, U.S. Banks Eye Europe as Growth Market: Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs Beefs Up in London by Hiring Mendoza, Former Morgan Exec

Magazine article American Banker

At IMC in Paris, U.S. Banks Eye Europe as Growth Market: Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs Beefs Up in London by Hiring Mendoza, Former Morgan Exec

Article excerpt

Europe's single currency and robust market opportunities, ranging from merger advisory to venture capital, have U.S. bankers salivating over the chance to expand in the region. Terrence Murray, chairman and chief executive officer of FleetBoston Financial Corp. in Boston, said venture capital is "pouring" into Europe as U.S. companies, including Fleet's own private equity unit and its investment bank, Robertson Stephens, search for fledgling technology and telecommunications firms. Another sign of the times: Goldman Sachs Group said Monday that it had lured Roberto Mendoza, a former J.P. Morgan & Co. vice chairman, out of retirement to boost the firm's profile in European as well as Latin American markets. Mr. Mendoza retired just two months ago from Morgan, where he had worked for 32 years and was credited with helping build up investment banking during the last decade. The Cuban-born Yale graduate represented some of Morgan's biggest clients, including National Westminster Bank PLC in its battle last year against rival takeover bids from competing Scottish banking companies. Americans have been scrambling to grab their share of business in Europe for the last few years. Indeed, the chance to develop Europe's credit markets, expand in investment management, aid in the consolidation of industries, and help build unified equity markets was the major focus of a meeting of about 150 bank executives in Paris last week for the annual International Monetary Conference. "There will be many opportunities for firms like ours to make ourselves useful here," said Douglas A. Warner 3d, chairman and chief executive officer of J.P. Morgan. "Based on the comments [of other bankers] I meet on airplanes, that seems to be the consensus viewpoint." Executives who attended the Paris conference cited statistics for the bond market in Europe before and after the introduction of the euro in January 1999 and said they illustrate the degree to which demand for bigger deals has been encouraged by the common currency. …

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