2015 Vault Rankings
"Big European ambitions"
"Relatively new to some European countries"
"Good global player"
"Botched the Merrill acquisition"
"Better with Merrill Lynch"
"Has lots of problems"
Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions, serving customers in more than 150 countries. The company has business relationships with 99 percent of the U.S. Fortune 500 and 95 percent of the Global Fortune 500. In Europe, BofA operates in 32 cities in 23 countries and employs 14,000 people.
In September 2008, Bank of America made just about every headline in the world when it announced that it would be buying New York-based investment bank Merrill Lynch. On 1 January 2009, the bank acquired Merrill Lynch in exchange for common and preferred stock with a value of US$29.1 billion. When the deal closed in early 2009, it made BofA the biggest U.S. bank in terms of assets, with more than US$2 trillion. It also made the combined firm the largest brokerage firm in the world, with about 16,000 financial advisors; one of the leading investment banking advisory firms, with significant operations in M&A advisory as well as debt and equity underwriting; and one of the world's top wealth management firms, with Merrill Lynch's nearly 50 percent stake in U.S.-based investment management company BlackRock.
Headquartered in lower Manhattan, Merrill Lynch had two main business segments when it came into the BofA fold: global markets and investment banking (with subunits of sales and trading; fixed income, currencies, and commodities; equities; and investment banking), and global wealth management (which included global investment management and global private clients).
Worldwide, BofA employs approximately 233,000 people. The bank is led by BofA Chairman and CEO Brian Moynihan, who took the company reins from former CEO Kenneth Lewis in late 2009. In early 2011, Moynihan announced that, unlike the strategy enacted under previous management, BofA would not be making any acquisitions in the near future. "We aren't buying a European bank," he said. "I couldn't think of anything less interesting."
2 King Edward Street
Phone: +44 20 7174 4000
Employer Type: Public
Stock Symbol: BAC
Stock Exchange: NYSE
Chairman & CEO: Brian T. Moynihan
2015 Employees (All Locations): 9,600