| NEW YORK, March 21
NEW YORK, March 21 JPMorgan Chase & Co
is the top adviser on mergers and acquisitions so far in the
first quarter, having worked on all four of the largest deals
announced since Jan. 1.
The investment bank advised on $130 billion worth of deals
through March 20, including the $23.2 billion takeover of H.J.
Heinz Co by Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway
and Brazilian private equity firm 3G Capital.
It came in ahead of archrival Goldman Sachs Group,
which advised on $118 billion of deals during the same period,
according to Thomson Reuters data.
JPMorgan's market share represents nearly 30 percent of the
roughly $440 billion in global deal volume so far this quarter,
up from 17.5 percent in 2012, when it ranked fourth in the
global M&A league table.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse Group
and Morgan Stanley round out the top five M&A
banks in the current quarter, Thomson Reuters data shows.
In addition to the Heinz deal, JPMorgan has been involved in
the other largest transactions of the quarter: Liberty Global's
$15.75 billion takeover of Virgin Media Inc,
the $24.4 billion bid to take Dell Inc private by
founder Michael Dell and buyout firm Silver Lake Partners, and
Comcast Corp's $16.7 billion deal to buy General
Electric Co's stake in NBC Universal.
Those assignments make JPMorgan the only bank to be involved
in all four of this quarter's deals valued at more than $10
The performance extends JPMorgan's rise in recent years in
the fiercely competitive business of M&A advisory, as a
long-running slump in deal volume since the 2008 financial
crisis has forced many other Wall Street firms to scale back.
"The fact that we've had a period of stability throughout
the financial crisis as a firm, on a relative basis, allowed us
to stay focused on our clients," said Chris Ventresca, head of
North America mergers and acquisitions at JPMorgan Chase.
Ventresca took on the role of running the bank's North
America M&A group in 2008, just at the height of the financial
With risk management capabilities and a large deposit base
that helps lower its funding cost, JPMorgan has been seen as one
of the safest and best managed Wall Street banks at a time when
some rivals required government bailouts or drastic
restructuring to survive.
JPMorgan's retail deposits have provided the bank with
stable funding compared with key U.S. rivals. The bank has also
been largely immune to the mortgage issues still weighing on
some banks. The government used JPMorgan to salvage the failed
firms of Bear Stearns and Washington Mutual during the financial
And the bank's financial strength has been shown in the
numbers. JPMorgan was the top global investment bank in 2012,
generating the biggest fees from M&A advice, equity and debt
"With a consistent client advisory team and less turnover
managing those accounts, it does all pay off in the end because
clients know you and trust you," Ventresca said.