International investment banks realising the value of recruiting locals for Nordic offices

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It may be on the fringes of Europe geographically, but the Nordic region is fast becoming an increasingly important area of focus for international investment banks. More firms are considering opening local offices and are looking to recruit senior people with good domestic knowledge and connections to staff them.

Earlier this month, Credit Suisse announced that it had poached Michael Ingelog from Deutsche Bank to run its Nordic business, initially out of London but from Stockholm once it opens a new Swedish office next year.

His appointment follows the bank's move in July to form a London-based Nordic equities team with the appointment of UBS bankers Fredrik Warneryd and Anders Borjefors.

EMEA chief executive Eric Varvel cited the region's highly developed pension fund system and mature financial services market as key attractions that made the region a "significant growth" opportunity.

And it's not the only bank to have its eyes on the region, points out Johan Wingren, of recruiter Michael Page in Stockholm.

"We are working with one bank that is also looking to establish a local office, and others have told me they are recognising the importance of having a local presence if you want to make headway in this market. It is important to have people in place rather than just flying in from another country," he says.

More local offices could mean more opportunities for senior-level people who know the culture, speak the language and have the right connections, he argues.

"These banks will be looking for senior people who have good connections on the client side. International banks also tend to be popular with local candidates because of their good reputation and the products they have," he adds.

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