BARCLAYS announced unexpectedly yesterday that Sam Dean, its highly popular and experienced head of equity capital markets in Europe, is taking a sabbatical for family reasons.
The news comes at the end of a year during which Dean’s team enjoyed prominence in a number of transactions, acting in the privatisation of Royal Mail and on other new issues such as Merlin and Infinis and Pegasus in Turkey. One rival described Dean as “the best syndicate guy in the business”.
As a result of his team’s success, Barclays has made its way up to a top ranking in UK new issues and is number three in Europe, Middle East and Asia. It has also gained a number of brokerships.
But its role in block trades, in which investment banks bid to offload sizeable stakes in public companies to institutional clients, has been limited ever since it ended up with around 15 per cent or $900m of shares in telecoms group Ziggo in March this year.
Since then Barclays has been noticeably absent from block trade deals which are an important part of equity capital markets activity.
Barclays said that Brian Reilly will act as interim head of global equity capital markets, in addition to his role as head of equity capital markets for the Americas.
“Brian has been leading our US ECM business for the past three years and has more than 15 years’ experience originating and executing key capital markets and M&A transactions for the firm,” an internal memo said. The memo concluded: “Sam is a great partner and leader and we look forward to his return in the near future.”