Bloomberg News

UBS’s CMBS Co-Heads Said to Depart After One Week in Posts

April 04, 2013

Brett Ersoff and John Herman, who took over the commercial-mortgage bond group at UBS AG (UBSN) last week after the group’s head departed for Bank of America Corp. (BAC:US), have left the bank, said two people familiar with the moves who asked not to be identified because they haven’t been announced.

Ersoff and Herman were named co-heads of real-estate finance and mortgage-backed securities after Kenneth Cohen exited to become the global head of commercial real estate at Bank of America in New York, UBS confirmed on March 28.

Switzerland’s largest lender is losing the bankers after overhauling compensation rules to limit risk. UBS cut its 2012 bonus pool, including deferred pay, by 7 percent to 2.5 billion Swiss francs ($2.75 billion), the bank said Feb. 5. About 500 million francs of that will be paid in contingent capital bonds that would be written off if the common-equity ratio falls below 7 percent or UBS needs a bailout.

Megan Stinson, a spokeswoman for UBS in New York, said she couldn’t comment on the latest departures, which were reported earlier today by Securitization Intelligence. Ersoff declined to comment and Herman couldn’t immediately be reached.

Zurich-based UBS is losing staff in the commercial-mortgage bond group as sales of the debt soar to the highest since 2007, with issuance poised to climb more than 50 percent to $70 billion in 2013, according to Credit Suisse Group AG.

Cohen’s Departure

Cohen, who arrived at UBS less than two years ago and previously oversaw commercial-mortgage backed securities at Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., is joining Bank of America as the second-biggest U.S. lender seeks to boost its market share in packaging loans linked to skyscrapers, hotels and shopping malls into bonds.

Eighth-ranked Bank of America underwrote $2.3 billion in mortgages in 2012, compared with $4.1 billion for No. 4 UBS, according to the Commercial Mortgage Alert, an industry newsletter.

UBS is partnering with Barclays Plc to offer a $1.3 billion commercial-mortgage bond deal this week, according to people familiar with the sale.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sarah Mulholland in New York at smulholland3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alan Goldstein at agoldstein5@bloomberg.net


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