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Speaker > Biography

Tommy Tan

Tommy Tan

Chief Executive Officer
TC Capital

Tommy has been an investment banker covering Asia since 1989 and has participated in the development of capital markets and investment banking activity in Asia. Prior to starting his own firm in 2002, he was managing director and head of investment banking in South East Asia for Morgan Stanley, head of investment banking for Asia Pacific at Deutsche Bank (then called Deutsche Morgan Grenfell), head of corporate finance Asia Pacific, head of Financial Institutions Group and head of investment banking South East Asia at Merrill Lynch. Throughout the volatility that characterizes Asian investment banking over business cycles and across countries, Tommy has been able to consistently identify profitable opportunities and lead his business units to success even in the most difficult markets.

He led Morgan Stanley to become the dominant franchise in South East Asia with limited resources (in 1994 his group was the highest revenue per officer and per professional globally). At Deutsche Bank he quickly reengineered and within one year establish that fragmented franchise as a leader in key areas such as ECM, convertible bonds and Telecoms. Upon joining Merrill Lynch, he focused its business in Asia and helped them ascend from 9th ECM position in 1998 with 120 target clients, to 1st in 1999 with only 35 target clients and consistently top until 2001 when he left. He is attuned to the quickly shifting markets of Asia so despite the bursting of the internet bubble, he was able to position Merrill Lynch to record fees in Singapore in 2001 with the largest M&A and the largest Equity Capital Market deals; and in the midst of the Asian Crisis in 1999, he made Indonesia the second highest fee paying country for Merrill Lynch in Asia, raising over US$1.2bn in equity; and to secure the 3 most important mandates awarded out of Indonesia in 2001.

His personal investment banking franchise is based on cultivating long term relationships at the chairman and CEO level as their respected and honest strategic advisor. He is particularly focused on bringing a regular stream of ideas to challenge their old assumptions and creating solutions for their business and financial needs. He has frequently helped his clients to identify strategic needs to be filled by an acquisition or by bringing in a partner. In capital markets he has helped many clients develop a regular funding strategy beginning with elevating their market presence, followed by a program of regular issuance of securities. He has also pioneered the issuance of new capital market instruments and new offering techniques to serve the needs of his clients and the market environment. He has had direct client responsibility in South East Asia where he has strong personal relationships at senior levels and has successfully won repeated business from the largest clients in the region over the years. He has also played the role of the Senior Management representative of Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank throughout Asia Pacific in helping relationship managers develop client relationships.

Tommy’s management approach is focused on profitability, performance, franchise building, identifying promising business opportunities in the highly volatile environment in Asia and directing scarce resources to winning in those areas. He places high importance on hiring, training and managing the best talent available. He makes a point of being personally involved in hiring and “closing” all team members even at the analyst and associate levels. He coaches his bankers, providing room for them to grow without feeling constrained by hierarchy and creating an exciting environment in which team members feel they are part of an effort to build businesses and client relationships. He helps senior bankers enhance their strategic dialogue with their clients in order for them to develop the status of a trusted advisor. With junior bankers he trains them to think about creating high impact ideas and presentations to support the senior bankers as well as to groom them for future coverage roles. Tommy constantly monitors performance and considers regular upgrading of talent at all levels to be essential to maintain competitiveness.



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