(Corrects deal value, month in paragraph 9)
By Lawrence White and Michael Flaherty
HONG KONG Nov 1 A top Goldman Sachs banker in
Asia is relocating to the United States to take on a global
role, people familiar with the matter told Reuters, after
playing a key part in the firm's efforts to broaden its business
amid a drop in equity offering volumes.
Dan Dees, Goldman's co-head of investment banking for Asia,
is expected to move within the next few months, the sources
said. They could not confirm the exact title the American banker
will take on, but said it would be a global appointment.
Goldman earned large fees on a few select deals in Asia in
the last year, during which investment banks across the region
took on more complex financings and aimed for solo bookrunning
offerings rather than depending on the steady volume of equity
issuance they previously enjoyed.
In addition to Goldman's Asia investment banking revamp,
Missouri-born Dees, 43, played a key role in two of Asia's three
largest ever initial public offerings: the $22.12 billion
listing of the Agricultural Bank of China and the
$20.5 billion flotation of insurer AIA Group Ltd.
Other top Goldman deals this year included the latest in a
series of three bond sales for Malaysian state investment fund
1Malaysia Development Bhd. The transactions earned Goldman
hundreds of millions of dollars in fees according to media
reports, and also attracted some criticism from Malaysian
Goldman Sachs declined to comment on Dees.
The sources cited the opportunity to move up from a regional
to a global role, and also family reasons, to explain Dees'
departure from Asia.
His wife and five children moved this summer to the U.S.
West Coast, where the children are now in school, the people
said. Before his six years in Hong Kong, Dees spent four years
People familiar with the matter said Dees was among the
bankers who worked around the clock to help AIG place $6 billion
of AIA shares in March 2012, in one of Hong Kong's largest
equity deals last year.
Deutsche Bank and Goldman got the lead roles on
the deal, specifying on term sheets that they were the "active"
co-ordinators and bookrunners. That sparked a minor spat with
the other underwriters, with banks complaining that the term
sheets implied the rest were "passive."
Dees graduated from Duke University in 1992, going straight
to Goldman in New York. He was named managing director in 2001
and partner in 2004.
Goldman named Dees and Matthew Westerman as its top Asia
investment bankers in February 2012.
When they took over as investment bank co-heads, Westerman
had most recently been global head of equity capital markets,
while Dees was the head of the financing group in Asia-Pacific
and chairman of the financing group for Japan.
Their priority was to continue the bank's efforts to
diversify revenues in Goldman Sachs' core investment banking
business in Asia, which, in common with other Wall Street banks,
had relied heavily on underwriting bumper stock offerings from
China's state-backed companies and other Greater China deals.
The dwindling supply of those deals, coupled with a
proliferation in the number of underwriters handling them,
prompted Goldman to expand its smaller-than-average debt capital
markets platform and its derivatives business in Asia.
Those businesses have become more lucrative as Asia's top
companies mature and demand more regular, and more
sophisticated, funding and hedging.
In 2010 and 2011, the majority of Goldman's Asia investment
banking revenues came from equity and M&A advisory fees,
according to Thomson Reuters data.
Last year, Goldman earned an estimated $346 million in Asia
Pacific investment banking, Thomson Reuters data show. That
revenue was spread across equity, bonds, loans and M&A, with
bonds taking the lion's share.
By the third quarter of 2012, investment banks made more
money from debt deals than underwriting stock offerings for the
People familiar with the matter say that Goldman is on track
to set a record for revenue this year for Asia Pacific
The bank may have earned as much as $700 million from
arranging private bond placements for 1MDB, according to
calculations by IFR magazine, a Thomson Reuters publication.
And it earned more than $40 million, one source told Reuters
at the time, for its exclusive handling of China state oil
refiner Sinopec 's 3.1 billion share offer in February
(Additional reporting by Elzio Barreto; Editing by Alex