ZURICH (Reuters) – UBS Group <UBSG.S> has created a private capital markets team to help wealth management clients invest in the burgeoning sector, the Swiss bank said on Wednesday.
The new team will focus on transactions and investments including last-stage financing of companies before initial public offerings, structured private credit, infrastructure investments, and secondary equity monetizations, UBS said in a staff memo.
Alan Felder will head the team in the Americas, Isabelle Toledano-Koutsouris in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and Nicolo Magni in Asia-Pacific, in addition to their current roles.
Paul Crisci, who is leading the global roll-out of the team, will oversee the business.
“Giving billionaires more direct investment opportunities in private markets is something they will value more than lending, which they can get from almost anyone,” said Piero Novelli, the co-head of UBS’s investment bank.
Such transactions are attractive to banks because they offer relatively solid fees, although UBS did not reveal these.
Novelli said it was difficult to forecast deal volumes.
“I think in 12 months we will be in a much better position to scope and size the opportunity,” he said.
“It will take several years to get it into the full regime. But I would not be surprised if it became a half a billion dollar business one day.”
The global net asset value of private equity has grown twice as fast as public market capitalisation since 2000 as more companies stay private for longer, its investment bank co-heads Robert Karofsky and Novelli said.
(Reporting by Angelika Gruber, Writing by Michael Shields)