December 24, 2012 / 7:41 AM / in 5 years

UPDATE 1-Nomura winds down Hong Kong-based FIG banking team - sources

* Nomura undergoing major restructuring to cut $1bln in costs

* Nomura relocating new global M&A head Kimura to Hong Kong (Adds details)

By Denny Thomas

HONG KONG, Dec 24 (Reuters) - Nomura Holdings Inc has wound down its five-member Hong Kong-based financial institutions group (FIG) banking team as part of a wider reorganisation of its investment banking business, sources familiar with the matter said on Monday.

The team, headed by Petter Sternby, was shut last week, though many in the group were prepared for such an outcome, the sources said. Sternby and insurance specialist Peter Goulston were the two managing directors in the team, while the rest were lower-ranking executives, the sources said.

The FIG team focused on advising banks, insurers and fund management companies on mergers and acquisitions, capital raising, and restructuring. The team had recently advised Singapore’s United Overseas Bank Ltd on the purchase of ING Groep NV’s Thailand asset management business. .

A Nomura spokeswoman in Hong Kong declined to comment on the move, but said: “Nomura’s client coverage is aligned by country and product expertise which is a more efficient and sustainable model in the current environment.”

Earlier this year, Nomura also closed down its technology, media and telecommunications banking team in Hong Kong, sources said.

The sources declined to be identified as the information was not public.

Nomura, Japan’s biggest brokerage, is in the process of restructuring which aims to cut around $1 billion in costs. Its loss-making European operation is expected to take the biggest hit.

The Japanese bank is also relocating the newly-named global head of M&A Kenji Kimura to Hong Kong, according to a memo obtained by Reuters. Kimura was recently promoted to the role following the departure of the other co-head of global M&A Piero Novelli. (Reporting by Denny Thomas; Editing by Daniel Magnowski)

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