Google hires Quattrone for advice on Microsoft

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The Independent Online

Frank Quattrone, the dotcom investment banker who fought off corruption allegations, has been hired by Google to advise it on its future strategy, confirming his re-emergence as a power player in Silicon Valley.

Qatalyst Group, the merchant banking boutique set up by Mr Quattrone, has joined Google's roster of corporate advisers to help it plan its response to the possible combination of Microsoft and Yahoo, its closest rivals.

Mr Quattrone once ruled a personal fiefdom inside Credit Suisse, but was brought down in 2000 and was found to have circulated an email that recommended – jokingly, he said – that his staff destroy emails prosecutors wanted for an investigation into boom-time excesses. In August 2006, Mr Quattrone agreed a deferred prosecution deal to avoid a third trial on obstruction of justice charges. The first ended with a hung jury; his conviction in the second was overturned on appeal.

Eric Schmidt, Google's chief executive, last month hailed Mr Quattrone's return as an important development for the investment banking industry.