Dresdner Kleinwort has recruited Mark Barrow, head of Close Brothers’ private equity coverage team, as it looks to win more business in the lucrative mid-market space.
Barrow will join Dresdner’s Financial Buyers group as a managing director in May, where he will report to the team’s head Tariq Hussein. He has been tasked with building up the firm’s mid-market practice, his specialist area for several years.
Dresdner worked on a number of deals at the larger end of the market in 2006, including the Netcare/Apax consortium’s £2.2 billion (€3.3 billion; $4.3 billion) acquisition of General Healthcare Group, and the EQT/ Macquarie acquisition of SSP from Compass for £1.8 billion in April. However, it has a relatively small presence in the mid-market.
Hussein said: “We find mid-market funds are increasingly looking for the full-service advisory and equity/debt finance capabilities we can offer. With Mark’s help we hope to capture more of this business to complement our already successful financial sponsors practice at the larger transaction end.”
Barrow will initially focus on the UK, but is expected to turn his attention to continental Europe in due course, according to a Dresdner Kleinwort spokesperson.
Barrow started his career as an accountant with KPMG, before joining Close Brothers in 1996. In March 2005, he was appointed as head of the bank’s newly-formed private equity coverage team. The division, which targets firms in the European mid-market, now employs about 12 staff in the UK, France and Germany. Clients include 3i, Bridgepoint, HgCapital and Electra Partners.
Close has attempted to minimise disruption by appointing Darren Redmayne to replace Barrow. Redmayne is a ready-made replacement for Barrow, having worked alongside him to set up the private equity coverage team in 2005. He has just returned from a six month secondment to the UK government’s Pensions Regulator, and will continue to run the bank’s Pension Advisory Group. He is also well equipped to manage the relationship between Close and Harris Williams, the bank’s strategic partner in the US, having spent two years on secondment there between 2002 and 2004.
A banking source said: “There was a time when there was very little movement in the senior ranks at Close Brothers. A bit of churn is probably no bad thing, because it provides opportunities for the people underneath them.”