David Hart, Director of Corporate Finance at Daniel Stewart is a Qualified Executive under the AIM Rules. He started his professional career at BZW (latterly CSFB) in 1990 and has spent the subsequent years providing corporate finance and broking advice to UK and overseas companies listed in London. David has a particular focus on the mid and small cap markets and has undertaken a wide range of capital markets and M&A transactions across a range of sectors, including technology software and hardware, support services, biotechnology and medtech, financial services and renewables. He has spoken at a number of international seminars for overseas companies considering raising capital in London.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
A lack of any depth of skill ruled out most sporting dreams. I therefore focused my pre-teen efforts on being a fighter pilot. For the record, this was some years before Top Gun.
How did you get into investment banking?
At the time I was at university (St Andrews), investment banking was seen as a well paid and exciting career. On leaving university I joined the graduate scheme at BZW…and it’s been investment banking ever since.
Describe your role in ten words or less (if that’s possible!):
Trusted adviser/counsel. Regulator/policeman. Myth debunker. Colleague.
If I wasn’t talking to you now, what would you be doing?
Cooking in my own restaurant (which I don’t have).
What is the most interesting thing about your work?
The wide variety of industries/sectors that I am exposed to.
Is there a common misconception about investment banking?
That it is well paid across the board.
How has the industry changed over the last couple of years?
There has been a phase of consolidation in the mid and small cap advisory/broking sector in recent years – a function of oversupply. This will continue. Separately, there has developed a significant mismatch between the equity/financing needs of listed businesses and the supply of that financing – particularly from institutional investors in the mid and small cap arena.
What developments do you expect to see in investment banking over the next 12 months?
Expect or hope? If it’s the former, I fear that the next 12 months will be a continuation of the last – low levels of transaction volume driven in the main by a lack of financing availability against a backdrop of increasing regulation. If it’s the latter, then the inverse of the above.
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