Caz chief to head JP Morgan tie-up

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Robert Pickering, the chief executive of Cazenove, will head the enlarged joint venture with JP Morgan and become its chief executive officer if the US investment bank succeeds in engineering a tie-up with the blue-blooded brokerage.

Robert Pickering, the chief executive of Cazenove, will head the enlarged joint venture with JP Morgan and become its chief executive officer if the US investment bank succeeds in engineering a tie-up with the blue-blooded brokerage.

The move underlines JP Morgan's commitment to allow Cazenove, which counts half of the FTSE 100 among its clients, to stick to its familiar practices in running the business. David Mayhew, the broker's chairman, would also keep his job.

The assembly of the senior management team, which would include a number of JP Morgan bankers, is one of the details that has been agreed between the two. However, sources emphasised there are several issues which have yet to be agreed in the deal, which would allow Cazenove to return about £350m to its shareholders, including £100m from JP Morgan.

In the meantime, Cazenove is considering an alternative offer from Lehman Brothers, which would see the Wall Street bank paying up to £800m to buy Cazenove outright.

At its annual meeting in London yesterday, Mr Mayhew said the future of the 181-year-old stockbroker was a "work in progress". "We are evaluating outline proposals which we have received from other firms. No action will be taken unless the board concludes that a transaction is clearly in the best interests of our clients, employees and shareholders," he said.

Cazenove informed its shareholders - mainly current and former employees - two weeks ago that it was cancelling the September internal auction of its shares because of the speculation about the firm's future. The move is the second time Cazenove has frozen its auction, raising expectations that it will agree a deal soon.

Both JP Morgan and Cazenove refused to comment.

Comments