Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (Wholesale Banking Division) at a Glance


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About Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (Wholesale Banking Division)

Canadian contender
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, commonly referred to as CIBC, is one of the largest banks in Canada.  Its wholesale banking business (CIBC World Markets Inc.) provides a wide range of credit, capital markets, investment banking, merchant banking, and research products and services to government, institutional, corporate and retail clients worldwide.  The firm’s global headquarters are located in Toronto, and it has additional offices across Canada and the U.S. as well as in other financial centers around the world.  The firm’s investment banking and capital markets divisions offer a range of financial services, including equities, commodities, fixed income, foreign exchange, money market and securitizations.  CIBC is one of Canada’s top M&A advisors in a number of industries, and is a leader in Canadian equity underwriting and structured products.

CIBC’s wholesale banking division was born in 1988 when CIBC acquired a majority interest in Wood Gundy Inc., a leading Canadian securities dealer established in Toronto in 1905.   Combining CIBC’s capital with Wood Gundy’s underwriting reputation, CIBC Wood Gundy Inc. became a powerful investment banking arm, quickly establishing itself as a leading North American investing institution.  Until recently, the marketing name of CIBC’s wholesale banking division was “CIBC World Markets.† (Today, technically speaking, CIBC World Markets Inc. (Canada) and CIBC World Markets Corp (U.S.) are wholly owned subsidiaries of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, and form the bank’s wholesale banking arm, which also includes other affiliates such as CIBC World Markets plc., CIBC World Markets Securities Ireland Limited, CIBC Australia Ltd., and CIBC World Markets [Japan] Inc.)

Neighbor to the south
In the U.S., Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce’s wholesale banking division maintains a specialized focus on a handful of business lines: investment, corporate and merchant banking; global equities; fixed income and currencies; and real estate finance.  Another key business area is cross-border U.S.-Canada M&A transactions and investment management.

In early 2008, CIBC sold its U.S.-based investment banking, leveraged finance, equities and related debt capital markets businesses to Oppenheimer Holdings Inc., exited its leveraged finance activities in London, and placed its structured credit business in runoff.  Certain other activities within continuing businesses, including derivatives trading and asset-backed commercial paper conduits, were also reduced.  CIBC retained its other U.S. wholesale businesses, which include real estate finance, equity and commodity structured products, merchant banking and oil and gas advisory, as well as the balance of its U.S. debt capital markets, Asia and U.K. businesses.  CIBC also maintained its corporate lending capability and its ability to distribute Canadian equities and fixed income products in the U.S. and international markets on behalf of its Canadian clients.

In addition to its U.S. headquarters in New York City, CIBC’s wholesale banking arm has office in Atlanta, Salt Lake City, Houston, Los Angeles and Chicago.

Restructure, revamp, recover
In February 2008, amid an executive reorganization, the former chief executive of the Toronto Stock Exchange, Richard Nesbitt, was appointed chairman and chief executive officer of CIBC’s wholesale banking division.  Nesbitt succeeded Brian Shaw in the role.  In addition to the management change, the firm divided its investment banking, corporate banking and merchant banking departments into three distinct units.  Upon the announcement, Nesbitt told staff that the “strategic changes†would allow the firm to “further enhance and broaden [its] client focus†and “take advantage of market opportunities resulting from changes in the global credit markets.† Nesbitt also noted that the firm’s investment banking team was “well positioned†to profit from the increasing significance of Canada as a contributor to the world economy across various sectors and industries.

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Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (Wholesale Banking Division)

161 Bay Street
Brookfield Place
Toronto M5J 2S8
Phone: (416) 594 7000


  • Employer Type: Public
  • Stock Symbol: BCM
  • Stock Exchange: NYSE
  • CEO: Richard Nesbitt
  • 2010 Employees: 1,100