Former HSBC banking bigwig gets on board with fintech

HSBC’s former global head of corporate finance and one of the City’s most experienced investment bankers has re-emerged to help a fintech firm focused on stock market listings and other equity deals.

John Crompton has been named chairman of the advisory board at Issufy, which sells an electronic data management tool that lets banks gather investor feedback online as well as handle tasks such as the allocation of shares.

Crompton spent six years with HSBC, including stints as head of equity capital markets and, more recently, head of corporate finance. He left in June 2016 as an overhaul of the bank’s global banking unit was revealed by divisional co-heads Robin Phillips and Matthew Westerman.

His new role sees him follow other former HSBC bankers into the fintech industry. Spencer Lake, who had been one of the bank’s most senior capital finance executives, now holds advisory roles with several technology firms. Ben Leonard, who was co-head of HSBC’s financial institutions group in the UK, is now running an advisory firm that aims to help start-ups and banks build relationships.

London-based Issufy was set up in 2016 by chief executive Nawaz Imam, Citigroup’s former head of emerging markets equity trading strategy, and chief operating officer Shanshan Fu, who spent a decade in Deloitte’s financial services industry group.

Crompton is helping the company to develop its product as well as introduce it to industry contacts. Earlier in his career, Crompton spent more than 20 years with Morgan Stanley in roles across London, New York and Hong Kong, including co-head of ECM for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

He then ran Merrill Lynch’s Emea ECM business for a year from 2007 and, before joining HSBC, spent two years as head of market investments at UK Financial Investments, where he was responsible for the UK government’s holdings in Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland.

Crompton told FN that he sees Issufy helping to update the traditional process of bringing a company to the public markets.

“I’m a great fan of the IPO process as a way of getting to a decent outcome for issuers and investors,” he said. “But there are ways it could be improved, principally related to gathering and acting upon information to inform decisions around marketing and price range setting. This can be made much more efficient by bringing more of it online.”

Imam said he established the firm with an eye on regulation, such as the European Union’s revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive, or Mifid II, that will govern how firms keep records of communication and issues such as allocation decisions during deals. He said he wanted the product to “empower” banks’ equity salesmen by giving them a more efficient communication tool.  

Issufy has been able to lean on other big-name equity bankers for advice since launch. In April it announced a collaboration with The ECM Team, an advisory firm established by Julian Macedo, who had been Barclays’ co-head of equity markets for central and eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Other advisers to Issufy, according to the company’s website, include Brian Collings, founder and chief executive of fintech company Torstone Technology; Patrick Garrett, a former managing director in Wells Fargo Securities’ equity capital markets unit; and Jonathan Shaw, an ex-Barclays trader who was more recently CEO of data provider SGDA.

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