Stifel Financial Corp. has added new members to its executive team in Canada despite having to make cuts to its oil and gas business this month.
Stifel Canada – which consists of both Stifel FirstEnergy and Stifel GMP – has appointed Mathieu L’Allier as vice-chairman, managing director and head of investment banking for Eastern Canada, the company said Wednesday.
It also announced the addition of Alex Terentiew as managing director of mining equity research and Justin Oliver as director of origination in investment banking.
The hires come just weeks after Stifel saw several FirstEnergy employees exit the company, including investment banker Erik Bakke and Michael Dunn, the brokerage’s large-cap energy analyst. Both had worked at FirstEnergy Capital, which was acquired by GMP Capital in 2016.
In an interview with The Globe and Mail, Stifel Canada chief executive Harris Fricker said the departures were necessary to reduce costs.
“We are completely committed to that region in the [oil and gas] industry, but of course we have to manage our expenses during fallow times. And we are all aware that the Canadian [oil and gas] market has seen some very challenging conditions since 2014,” he said.
“But I can say with a high degree of confidence that FirstEnergy remains one of the largest and most ingrained players in that region in the oil and gas market, and we will continue to be a major player in the sector.”
Outside the Calgary office, Mr. Fricker said, the company plans to add more roles – particularly in banking. To date, Mr. Fricker has brought in more than a dozen senior executives since St. Louis-based Stifel bought GMP’s capital markets business last November.
Mr. L’Allier brings more than two decades of investment banking experience. Most recently, he was president and founder of Mission Capital Group, a private equity investment company, where he offered advisory services to entrepreneurs, boards of directors and government agencies. Prior to Mission, he spent 17 years at BMO Capital Markets in a similar role, as managing director and head of investment and corporate banking in Quebec.
Mr. Terentiew spent a decade covering the mining industry as an analyst before taking executive roles at Trevali Mining and Canadian GoldCamps, an exploration company focused on new gold discoveries.
Mr. Oliver has 20 years of capital markets experience in institutional sales and business development and held senior roles at both BMO Global Asset Management and hedge fund manager MMCAP.
Building up the firm by adding new senior management was always Stifel’s plan postacquisition, Mr. Fricker said.
“We will be adding more disruptive Tier 1 talent to ensure we have lots of different voices at the leadership table, with lots of different experience sets,” he added.
Industry veteran Matthew Gaasenbeek, co-head of investment banking for Stifel GMP, was one of the first to join the new office within the first week of the deal closing last November. The former president of the capital markets division at Canaccord Genuity Group Inc. has more than 25 years of experience in both institutional equities and corporate finance.
Since then, Mr. Fricker and Mr. Gaasenbeek have been building the Canadian team. The company has seen people join from rival companies, including Maggie MacDougall, vice-chair and head of research, and Chad MacDonald, managing director of institutional trading, who both joined last spring.
With independent brokerages dealing with the drop in the Canadian oil and gas sector, as well as a pause in the cannabis market, Mr. Fricker said the firm has been very active in other areas, such as traditional health care, Canadian technology, blockchain, psychedelics and mining – particularly gold.
“We have seen a lot of dynamism,” he said. “If you look at the implications for fiat currencies of these incredible, large stimulus packages from various governments, we are obviously seeing enormous interest in gold. As well, it is not surprising that bitcoin has run dramatically here in the context of the devaluation of fiat currencies … and we’re one of the leading players in the world of blockchain and cryptocurrencies.”
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