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Canaccord hires Lazard veteran to head European unit

Canaccord is bringing on Alexis de Rosnay as chief executive officer of the firm's U.K. and Europe investment banking operations.

Guy Bell

Canaccord Financial, Canada's largest independent securities firm, is showing its ability to attract big name hires by adding a senior Lazard banker as its new head for Britain and Europe.

Canaccord is bringing on Alexis de Rosnay as chief executive officer of the firm's U.K. and Europe investment banking operations. Canaccord recently expanded in London with the $400-million purchase of Collins Stewart Hawkpoint, a British brokerage. Current London head Mark Brown, who came from Collins Stewart, moves into a consulting role.

Mr. De Rosnay is stepping in at a challenging time. Investment banking globally is slowing. Fewer companies are doing deals amid doom-and-gloom news on the economic front.

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"Alexis' extensive, international investment banking experience and strong leadership capabilities are extremely well suited for this strategically important role," Canaccord CEO Paul Reynolds said in an internal company note announcing the hiring. Mr. De Rosnay's experience includes, most recently, a job as co-head of U.K. investment banking at Lazard. Before that, he was at Lehman Brothers as co-head of global health-care investment banking and co-head of investment banking for Europe and the Middle East. He also worked at JPMorgan and Rothschild Group.

His job at Canaccord will be to tie more closely the company's growing operations on the other side of the Atlantic with those in other offices in Canada, the U.S., Australia and China. He will report directly to Mr. Reynolds, and will work closely with the strong UK management team in place.

In the current slow market, Canaccord, like many firms, has been struggling to make money. However, Mr. Reynolds said that the firm is taking market share and hoping to prosper in a rebound.

"We're trending to break our firm's market share records in many of our businesses," he said. "We're one of the strongest global mid-market firms in our industry, and I expect our clients and shareholders will see the full value of our growing capabilities when market conditions improve in some of our core markets."

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