Paul Harvey has joined Stifel Nicolaus Weisel's European investment banking team as a managing director in the firm's London office, heading up its European technology practice.

"We are pleased to welcome Paul to the team,” said Thom Weisel, Co-Chairman of Stifel Financial. “Paul's extensive private equity and venture capital relationships in Europe and the U.S. are a great asset to our technology effort, particularly in Europe, where we see significant opportunity."

Harvey reports to New York-based Brad Raymond, co-head of investment banking at Stifel Nicolaus Weisel. “The opportunities we see now in Europe are principally in the M&A market and in our ability to raise capital for European companies in the United States,” Raymond told On Wall Street. “Over 50% of our M&A assignments have cross-border dialogues. Ten years ago, that number was closer to 0%.”

Raymond said that Stifel’s ability to participate in such transactions will be enhanced by the addition of Harvey, whose experience in the technology sector dates back to 1986. Harvey, who received his BSBA from Georgetown University and his MBA from the Harvard Business School, has held senior positions in the European Technology Investment Banking practices of Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank, and Goldman Sachs.

For the past six years, Harvey has been a general partner at Atlantic Bridge, a European mid-market tech-focused private equity fund that he co-founded in 2005. According to Stifel, Harvey was involved in over $16 billion of technology financings prior to co-founding Atlantic Bridge. In addition, he has advised on transactions with aggregate values of approximately $60 billion.

"We continue to expand and strengthen the Stifel platform,” Raymond said. “Paul brings to this role an impressive network of senior executive, entrepreneur, private equity, and venture capital contacts built and nurtured over the 25 years that he has been active in this sector."

In Europe, Stifel hopes to leverage its U.S. relationships. “The mid-market companies we work with in the U.S. are potential buyers of European assets,” Raymond told On Wall Street. “At the same time, smaller U.S. companies might be sellers in deals involving large European companies. As an example, several years  ago we advised a seller on a transaction in which a U.S. company was acquired by Alcatel,” he said, referring to Alcatel-Lucent, the French-based tech giant. “With Paul in our London office, we’ll have more access to major European companies such as Alcatel."

Economic stress in Europe may help create opportunities for Stifel, according to Raymond. “European companies are looking for liquidity,” he said. “They may be trying to raise capital in the U.S., if it’s not available in Europe, or they might be trying to sell assets here.”

It has been nearly five years since Stifel established a “beachhead” in Europe by setting up a London office. “Our emphasis has been on natural resources companies. Tech is a logical ‘vertical’ for us, given the breadth of our tech team in the U.S.,” Raymond said, referring to increased emphasis on the tech sector. “We see opportunities in adding more verticals in the future, in areas such as health care.”

Donald Jay Korn writes for On Wall Street.




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