UBS Brings Back Sergio Ermotti as CEO for Credit Suisse Takeover

Bullion Bite
UBS Brings Back Sergio Ermotti as CEO for Credit Suisse Takeover

UBS has rehired Sergio Ermotti as its CEO to oversee its takeover of Credit Suisse. The move comes as a surprise and is seen as a means to benefit from Ermotti’s experience in rebuilding the bank after the 2008 global financial crisis. His immediate challenges include laying off thousands of staff, cutting back Credit Suisse’s investment bank, and reassuring wealthy clients that UBS remains the best place to park their cash. Ermotti, the current chairman of Swiss Re, will take the helm from April 5. He was previously the CEO of UBS from 2011 to 2020.

The takeover of Credit Suisse by UBS made the latter Switzerland's one and only global bank, with roughly 260 billion francs ($170 billion) in state loans and guarantees to underpin the new group. Vontobel analyst Andreas Venditti believes that Ermotti's experience in paring back UBS's investment bank after the 2008 financial crash makes him well-equipped for the job. Current CEO Ralph Hamers was a notable absentee from the announcement of UBS's takeover of Credit Suisse on March 19. The following day, he described the end of Credit Suisse as a "sad day" that nobody wanted.

UBS has removed Hamers from his position, as he had no significant M&A experience and was tasked with merging two banks with $1.6 trillion in assets, over 120,000 employees, and a complex balance sheet. Ermotti said he is looking forward to integrating UBS and Credit Suisse, acknowledging that the task at hand is challenging and urgent. Hamers has agreed to step down to serve the interests of the new combination, the Swiss financial sector, and the country, according to UBS.

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