Monday, October 1, 2012

Lazard banker launches chemicals boutique

Lazard’s former global co-head of chemicals has launched Natrium Capital, joining a small number of boutique advisers serving the $4 trillion chemicals sector.

 Alasdair Nisbet, formerly London-based co-head of chemicals investment banking at Lazard alongside Richard Whitney, left the bank last month, according to the UK Financial Services Authority's register of authorised persons. He has launched Natrium Capital, according to Companies House.
Lazard declined to comment. Nisbet could not be reached for comment.
Whitney, who joined Lazard in October last year and was previously global co-head of chemicals at Credit Suisse, is now running the business as sole head.

  Nisbet joined Lazard a decade ago in 2002 as part of a hiring spree instigated by the late Bruce Wasserstein, who at the time was the new head of the investment bank. Nisbet, like Wasserstein, had previously worked at Dresdner Kleinwort and Wasserstein Perella.
Nisbet has worked with a number of large clients in the industrials sector, including BASF, Dow Chemicals, Tata Chemicals, Shell and BP.

  In June, Lazard advised German plastics firm Klockner Pentaplast on its $1bn acquisition by US hedge fund Strategic Value Partners.

  Natrium, the Latin for sodium, joins a small number of boutiques focusing on the chemicals sector. London-based Valence Group, a specialist investment bank offering M&A advisory services exclusively to the chemical sector, is one of the largest and in May announced plans to increase its headcount from 30 to 60 over the next two years.
In the US, Young and Partners, founded by Peter Young, former head of chemicals at Lehman Brothers, also focuses on the chemicals industry.
A July report by Valence said the $3.8 trillion chemical industry would remain “strong” for M&A. There have been 60 deals over $100m in the chemical space so far this year, compared to 100 over the same time period last year, according to data from Dealogic.