UBS mulls sweeteners to keep Credit Suisse wealth bankers - source

A person walks past the UBS office in London
A person walks past the entrance of the UBS office in London, Britain March 20, 2023. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

LONDON, March 20 (Reuters) - UBS Group AG told Credit Suisse wealth bankers it's weighing financial sweeteners for them to stay as it seeks to reassure key staff following the takeover, a person with knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Monday.

In a town hall for Credit Suisse's employees in wealth management in Zurich, Iqbal Khan, UBS's president for global wealth management and Francesco de Ferrari, Credit Suisse's CEO for wealth management, reassured staff on Monday that the two banks will all be acting as a "big family," the person said.

During the townhall, the executives also said that there would be retention packages, most likely for front office staff without providing further details, the person said.

A spokesperson for UBS declined to comment.

UBS said on Sunday it will pay 3 billion Swiss francs ($3.23 billion) for 167-year-old Credit Suisse and assume at least $5.4 billion in losses in a deal backed by a massive Swiss guarantee and expected to close by the end of 2023.

The transaction is the first rescue of a global bank since the financial crisis of 2008.

During the townhall, the executives didn't provide further details on job cuts. Before the deal, Credit Suisse had embarked on a plan to slash 9,000 jobs. That number can grow to 10,000, Reuters has reported as UBS acquires Credit Suisse.

UBS said in a presentation that the acquisition will scale up the bank's global wealth and asset management franchise with more than $3.4 trillion in invested assets on a combined basis, according to a press release on Sunday.

Reporting by Stefania Spezzati; Editing by Elisa Martinuzzi and Dhara Ranasinghe

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Stefania is an award-winning reporter who covers European investment banking at Reuters. Based in London, she chronicles all things finance, break news and dig deep into the world's biggest banks. Born in Puglia, Italy, Stefania started working as a financial journalist in Milan for MF-DowJones, a newswire backed by Dow Jones and Milano Finanza, a leading Italian financial publication. Prior to joining Reuters, Stefania spent about a decade at Bloomberg News, starting in Milan and then moving to London. She helped lead an investigation which exposed how millions of pounds in taxpayer-backed loans went to firms with dubious credentials using data-journalism. The story won at the British Journalism Awards in crime journalism. Contact: +44 7500 684790