'Golden touch' Indian new Deutsche Bank co-chairman

25th July 2011, Comments 0 comments

Anshu Jain has long captained Deutsche Bank's cricket team in London, but from May 2012 the Indian will be skipper of the German banking powerhouse's entire operations.

The 48-year-old investment banker, named co-chairman on Monday in tandem with German veteran Juergen Fitschen, brings to the job a reputation of having both a golden touch and rigorous self-discipline.

Born in Jaipur in Rajasthan, northwest India, Jain studied at Dehli University before moving to the United States and gaining an MBA in finance from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Jain has enjoyed a meteoric career since first joining Merrill Lynch in New York, moving to Deutsche in London in 1995 and rising to be in charge of its investment banking unit.

The division is Deutsche Bank's main generator of profits, and Jain is generally credited with swiftly returning the unit to winning ways after the 2008-09 global financial crisis.

Since 2002 he has been on the bank's executive committee and in April 2009 chairman Josef Ackermann, whom Jain and Fitschen will be succeeding, brought him onto the seven-man management board.

Jain's mandate on the board has also been extended by five years, the bank said.

Already, Jain earns more than Ackermann, with a salary plus performance-related components of 7.6 million euros ($10.6 million) in 2010, compared to 6.3 million for his boss, according to Deutsche's annual report.

Colleagues say that married father-of-two Jain has a genius for analysis and devising innovative financial products and an innate talent for negotiation.

His reputation for self-discipline is inspired by Jainism, an ancient ascetic religion from his native India.

Detractors reproach him however for showing an overachiever's arrogance and for creating tensions between London's investment division and more traditional bankers back in Frankfurt.

The position of Deutsche Bank chairman is no ordinary job meanwhile, and filling the Swiss Ackermann's shoes will not be easy.

Deutsche is not just investment banking. It also has significant private and retail operations, not least in Germany, and the position requires cosy contacts with the country's politicians and business leaders.

Ackermann, 63, has also become a key figure during the Greek debt crisis, representing banks in crisis talks with the German government and eurozone leaders, writing newspaper commentaries and appearing on television.

With Jain having no German, although he is said to be learning, this part of the job will be handled by Fitschen, the veteran banker and head of Deutsche's Germany unit named as the group's other co-chairman.

"In Fitschen they have found someone who meets these requirements," Konrad Becker, banking analyst at Merck Finck, told AFP.

"He is the person who could help Jain, introduce him to the ins and outs and finer points of Germany, so that he doesn't put his foot in it."

© 2011 AFP

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