May 18, 2015 / 2:26 PM / 4 years ago

Ex-Barclays and Lehman dealmaker McGee sets up energy advisory firm

LONDON, May 18 (Reuters) - Former Barclays and Lehman Brothers dealmaker and senior executive Hugh ‘Skip’ McGee has launched a boutique merchant bank specialising in the U.S. energy sector.

McGee, who quit Barclays last June, said on Monday he had set up Intrepid Financial Partners to provide merger and acquisition and restructuring advice to companies and investors in the energy sector.

Intrepid also plans to make equity and debt investments with its own capital alongside that of its clients. The company, which has offices in Houston and New York, said its primary focus will be on the U.S. natural resources and power industries.

A U.S. shale oil boom has created a global glut, with oil prices falling more than 40 percent over the past year, raising expectations of the kind of merger activity last seen during the previous oil price downturn in late 1990 and the early 2000s.

Many oil majors have said they would use the downturn to beef up their presence in the U.S. shale sector, where the revolution has been led mainly by small and mid-sized players.

“In natural resources and power, market fundamentals have changed significantly, based on new technologies and geopolitical factors ... these changes create numerous advisory opportunities and attractive strategic investments,” McGee said in a statement.

McGee, who was one of Barclays’ highest earners, left the British lender after saying he did not want to oversee the task of setting up a new holding company for the bank to meet tougher U.S. rules. His exit coincided with pressure on Barclays to cut pay at its investment bank and shrink the business.

The Texan joined Barclays after it bought Lehman Brothers’ U.S. business following the bank’s collapse in 2008, becoming head of its Americas operations in March 2013.

He specialised in advising energy clients, including Kinder Morgan on its $21 billion purchase of El Paso Corp.

McGee has co-founded Intrepid with Christopher Winchenbaugh, who was chief operating officer of Barclays Americas and previously held the same post at Barclays’ global investment banking division, having also worked at Lehman.

McGee will be Intrepid’s CEO and Winchenbaugh will be president and chief operating officer. (Reporting by Steve Slater; Editing by David Goodman)

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