The other Morgan
Morgan Joseph zeroes in on offering financial advisory and capital-raising services for its clients domestically and internationally. Unlike some of its bigger counterparts, the firm has actually continued to grow, adding new divisions even into 2008, a pretty troubled year for most of the financial industry, which is still reeling from the collapse of credit and mortgage markets.
Its investment-banking unit, which employs about 70 investment bankers, uses its equity sales and trading divisions to help its client trade a variety of securities. The firm’s advisory services group gives transaction advice to corporate clients and institutional investors, its subdivisions include M&A, restructuring and advisory for financial and special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs).
Morgan Joseph’s capital markets group provides services to those who issue debt, equity and convertible securities. Capital markets’ subdivisions, which include equity capital markets, high yield capital markets, private placements and SPAC underwriting, are involved in a variety of different transactions. Within its equity capital markets unit, the firm manages initial public offerings while the high-yield capital markets unit takes care of managing secured and subordinated notes. The private placement subdivision, meanwhile, takes care of placing preferred stock, debt and warrants. Finally, Morgan Joseph’s SPAC underwriting subdivision is somewhat of its crown jewel, it had more than $2.3 billion in 20 transactions from underwriting SPACs (overall, the industry has raised $14.8 billion via SPACs from 2004 to 2008).
The firm stays busy advising on a number of transactions. It advised Kohlberg & Company on its $270 million acquisition of PPG Industries’ auto glass and service unit in September 2008 and Angelica Corporation on its $300-million sale to Lehman Brothers Merchant Banking in August 2008. It also recently provided a fairness opinion to Icahn Enterprises on its $863 million purchase of the majority of Federal-Mogul Corporation.
Structure and restructure
Morgan Joseph formed several new units in 2008, first launching its analytics and trading group in June 2008. At the outset, the firm planned to trade structured products like residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS), commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS), structured credit securities (CLOS) and asset-backed securities (ABS). In September 2008, Morgan Joseph announced that it would be adding a division focused on restructuring transactions to its corporate finance department, which is now simply called the Structured Products Team. The restructuring unit, which gives advice to distressed firms, is headed up by James Decker and comprises six bankers.
600 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10020
Phone: (212) 218-3700
Employer Type: Private
CEO: John F. Sorte
2009 Employees (All Locations): 130