This new bank in Singapore is quietly hiring from DBS before bonus season

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Koh Boon Pin W Capital Markets

Veteran DBS investment banker Koh Boon Pin has left to join W Capital Markets, a Singapore-based IB boutique that was set up last year and has since been hiring. Koh moved to W Capital – which provides M&A, pre-IPO and other corporate finance services to mid-cap companies in Asia – earlier this month as a partner and head of IPO.

His new firm is led by founding chairman and CEO, Wayne Lee, who launched W Capital in July 2018 after seven years at Tata Capital Markets, latterly as CEO and head of corporate finance, according to his LinkedIn profile.

W Capital has been on somewhat of a hiring spree of late. In August last year, CEO Lee took on ex-Tata colleague Foo Say Nam as head of advisory. Four months later another former Tata employee, Tsai Xinyi, came on board as vice president of corporate finance. The boutique also appointed Julian Dermawan, formerly of business outsourcing firm First Names Group, as head of compliance earlier this month.

Koh, W Capital’s latest senior hire, has moved firms before Chinese New Year, traditionally a quiet time for front-office recruitment in Singapore because most banks have not yet paid their bonuses. Boutiques and buy-side firms, however, do sometimes people from large banks in December/January in an effort to avoid the more competitive post-bonus period. As we reported earlier this week, for example, UOB’s head of mezzanine capital, Wee Yap Yeo, has just joined Fullerton Financial Holdings as head of SME credit.

Koh’s departure is a loss to DBS’s investment bank. He had clocked up 15 years with the firm and worked on numerous high-profile capital raisings for local and foreign corporates and real estate investment trusts, including the IPO of EC World REIT, the first Asian listing of a REIT that owns e-commerce logistics and specialised logistics real estate in China. He was also involved in corporate spin-off and demerger exercises at DBS, according to the W Capital website.

Nanyang Technological University accountancy graduate Koh began his career in 2000 with a three-year stint working in assurance and business advisory services at PwC. He is currently a board member of the CFA Society Singapore.

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Image credit: loveguli, Getty

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