Citadel Group Investment Group LLC, incubated in a Harvard dorm room and cultivated into Chicago's biggest hedge fund, is growing an i-banking arm.
The firm just hired three Merrill Lynch executives to spearhead the initiative, bolstering its stable of 1,200 workers in Chicago, New York, Hong Kong and London.
The new branch will dip a toe into some advisory services and though the company declined to detail its hiring plans, it pledged to expand its operations to offer a full suite of i-bank activities, from road shows to wrangling deals.
Citadel sees a sweet spot between bulge bracket banks, which are doing less deal-making these days, and boutiques.
Leading the new Citadel team is Todd Kaplan, who headed global leveraged finance, capital markets and financing and global principal investments during a long tenure at Merrill Lynch.
Kaplan's two lieutenants, Brian Maier and Carl Mayer, also have Merrill DNA. Maier most recently headed consumer industries and equity private placements for the bank, while Carl Mayer handled Merrill's leveraged finance capital markets division.
"We have the foundation of an exceptional team of esteemed banking professionals," Rohit D'Souza, CEO of Citadel Securities, said in a release.
Citadel said it may hire headhunters to help staff up its new venture, but it is also accepting CVs at firstname.lastname@example.org (the firm's director of global recruiting is Darcy Zulpo).
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