Credit Suisse: Leaping up the league table

by Brenon Daly

While most of the focus of Oracle’s mammoth purchase of Sun Microsystems has been on the impact on the tech landscape, we’d like to note that the pending transaction is also likely to radically reshape another market: tech banking. True to form, Oracle didn’t use an outside adviser, while Sun tapped George Boutros and Storm Duncan from Credit Suisse Securities. That means CS gets sole credit for the largest tech deal of 2009, vaulting to the head of our league table.

To put the pending Oracle-Sun deal into perspective, consider that the equity value ($7.4bn) is larger than the total announced equity value of all US IT transactions that CS advised on in 2008 ($6bn). In our annual league table report, CS ranked as the 11th-busiest tech adviser, after finishing third in 2007. In the early going of 2009, CS is the bank to catch. (It also has a co-credit, along with Barclays Bank, for helping to sell Interwoven to Autonomy Corp, which was banked by Deutsche Bank Securities and Morgan Stanley. That was the largest deal of the first quarter.)

Tech banking, of course, is only a small part of the overall operations at Zurich-based Credit Suisse Group. And on Thursday, the institution had some good news for Wall Street. It reported better-than-expected earnings of some $1.7bn for the first quarter. Several other rival banks also posted positive results. The ADRs of CS added 15% in late-afternoon trading on Thursday, meaning they have risen by one-third in value since the start of 2009.