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Evercore to establish US cash equities business

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Evercore Partners intends to expand its investment banking platform by establishing a US cash equities business and broadening its strategic capital markets advisory services.

These initiatives will focus on building equity research, distribution and new issue origination capabilities, concentrating initially on providing services in industry sectors that complement Evercore’s advisory franchise.

Evercore will concurrently enhance its ability to advise corporate clients on financing issues.

Charles Myers has joined Evercore as a senior managing director and will lead the firm’s cash equities business. Myers, who was most recently the global head of equities at Fox-Pitt Kelton, brings more than 20 years of experience in building and managing equity businesses, both domestically and internationally.

Jim Birle has joined Evercore as a senior adviser and will lead the firm’s effort to advise its clients on strategic capital markets issues. Birle was most recently the head of global equity capital markets at Merrill Lynch, having worked there for 20 years in senior capital markets positions.

The cash equities business will be majority-owned by Evercore and will have additional strategic investors and founding partners, including Bart McDade, the former president and global head of equities at Lehman Brothers, as well as Myers and Birle. McDade will work closely with Evercore and the founding partners to establish the equities business and attract research, sales and trading professionals.

The Evercore cash equities business is expected to launch during the first half of 2010 following the operational build-out required to support equity sales and underwriting. During this time, Evercore expects to recruit additional research, sales and trading professionals and launch research coverage of targeted sectors.

Evercore and the founding partners will commit to maintain the appropriate level of capital to support a client-driven business of secondary and new issue activity, with a minimum initial capitalization of USD50m. Consistent with the firm’s core business principles, Evercore will not engage in any proprietary trading and will organise its operations to avoid actual or potential conflicts with its clients. The timing of the launch is subject to regulatory approvals and additional conditions.

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