Here is a detail from the Wall Street Journal’s article today about how Morgan Stanley […]
In snaring the most coveted investment-banking assignment of the year, Morgan Stanley’s Michael Grimes insisted […]
Corporate venture capital has begun to rival “traditional” venture capital and angel investing in its importance as an investment source for healthcare industry innovation. However, unlike VCs and angels, there is a dearth of information on how the various players in the corporate venture sector operate.
Morgan Stanley is “maniacally focused” on cutting costs apart from compensation and is on track to reduce expenses by $500 million this year, Chief Executive James Gorman said on Tuesday. Gorman, speaking at a conference in New York, also reiterated Morgan Stanley’s plans to reduce costs by $1.4 billion annually over the long term…The bank is also monitoring the size of its overall payroll for possible job cuts as revenue remains under pressure from a weak market environment, he said. “We are very, very focused on that, obviously, in this environment,” said Gorman.
Morgan Stanley “maniacally” focused on cost cuts-CEO [Reuters]
Very much related: Morgan Stanley Joins Goldman Sachs In Herbicide
Supposedly summer cuts are under consideration at all firms.
Morgan Stanley is planning to eliminate about 100 trading jobs internationally in the next several weeks — with an unknown number of the cuts coming from New York. At Goldman, executives are likely to let the hatchet fall if the slowdown in trading doesn’t reverse itself, bank officials have said…Goldman is already cutting selectively among its middle-management ranks but could cut even deeper, sources explained. Goldman CFO David Viniar has told people that the firm may have to undergo a “right-sizing” again if the markets’ rocky road doesn’t improve, according to sources. And it’s not just Goldman and Morgan. Industry sources said that a number of other firms, including Citigroup and Barclays Capital, may also look to trim staff.
Morgan Stanley has announced that it will be buying 14% of its Morgan Stanley Smith […]
Morgan Stanley Chairman and Chief Executive James Gorman defended the securities firm’s role in Facebook’s tumultuous initial public offering, telling employees internally that the firm worked “100% within the rules” and calling the steep decline in Facebook’s stock “disappointing.” Mr. Gorman, in a weekly strategy meeting Tuesday that was later webcast to employees, said “speculation of nefarious activity” surrounding the social networking company’s IPO is untrue. Contrary to some reports, he said, he wasn’t “aware of any dissent” among the underwriting firms regarding Facebook’s IPO price of $38 a share. The discussion, called a strategy forum, is held weekly at the firm. The event, which Mr. Gorman attends periodically, features commentary from analysts and economists and is linked to on the company’s internal website.
Mr. Gorman told employees to “be proud of the job your colleagues did [in the Facebook IPO process] and don’t judge us based upon what happened over a couple of days.” Commenting on Facebook’s stock performance, Mr. Gorman acknowledged the first day of trading “matters” but added investors should also judge an IPO based on its share price after 30 days, 90 days and 12 months.
It did not take long for plaintiffs’ lawyers to realize that there was good money […]
Remember how a week ago people went around bothering themselves about Bank of America’s derivatives? […]
Earlier this week, it was announced that Zoe Cruz would be closing her hedge fund, Voras Capital Management. Cruz started the fund in 2010, a few years after she was famously fired by John Mack at Morgan Stanley (where she was co-President), for reasons that remain unclear to this day but include theories like: a) the belief that she was responsible for losing the firm a few billion dollars b) a lot of people disliked her– including this guy named Vikram Pandi who was “not a fan“– and told Mack they would leave if he made Cruz CEO c) Mack had to blame either himself or Cruz for some losses and he chose her. d) She was, you know, a girl, and the boys didn’t like that. Regardless, the ousting was probably mildly to majorly humiliating for ZC and since Mack– who she was extremely close with prior to the personnel change– was the one who told her to hit the bricks, it would have been fair to assume she spent a least a little time fantasizing about sticking pins in a Mack voodoo doll and/or slashing his tires.
In 2009, though, Mack and Zoe had lunch and she told him she wanted to start a hedge fund. And maybe it was it was the fact that he was feeling nostalgic, maybe it was the fact that tragedy + time = comedy, maybe it was the fact that he was still riding high from “saving” Morgan Stanley, maybe it was the wine, maybe it was that he was feeling bad about the unceremonious canning and thought “Oh, why not just give the poor girl some money” but Mack went back to the office and “told bank executives that he would like to help her start her new investment business, according to people familiar with the matter.” And when they said, “But John, didn’t you fire her for supposedly taking on too much risk and losing the firm $4 billion,” he said “[Well], her track record was a very good track record.” So Morgan Stanley gave Cruz $20 million and she was on her way. And while we can’t say for sure, and we’re not suggesting money necessarily heals all wounds, the $20 million and the stamp of approval and the fact that she could say to investors she was trying to raise money from ,”Hey look, even the guy who fired me wants in” probably helped smooth things over and improve MS’s standing in the Cruz-missile’s eyes. She likely even had nice things to say about her former employer at social gatherings! And then this happened:
Last month, Morgan Stanley asked for its money back, disappointed by the hedge fund’s performance and worried about the shrinking size of Ms. Cruz’s firm, according to people familiar with the matter…The retreat by Morgan Stanley was part of broader moves to sell off assets that Chief Executive James Gorman felt exposed the company to unnecessary risk or otherwise didn’t serve clients, the people said…On Thursday, the 57-year-old Ms. Cruz told clients in a letter that she has decided to close down Voras Capital Management. The letter cited “the difficult capital-raising environment for new funds and the enormous uncertainty and volatility in the markets,” according to a person who saw the letter. It was signed by Ms. Cruz.
Oooo, that’s not good. In fact, it’s worse than if they’d never given her the $20 mill at all. But to give and take back? Yikes. All those nice things Cruz said about MS and Co? Strike them from the record because they are so over! Don’t call, don’t write, don’t cry don’t beg ’cause you’re done! Finished!
World champion rower Michael Blomquist valued the chance for an Olympics gold medal in London […]
Gasparino: Let’s get something straight right off that bat– 6 months ago, someone at your firm wanted to kill me…you don’t want to kill me, correct?
Gorman: Charlie…I don’t wan to kill you…I don’t think they did either.
Gasparino: I don’t blame them if they did..given my reputation with PR people. So thank you for coming here, checking your guns at the door.
“I think Morgan Stanley will allow you to buy that house on the coast of Spain. I think that stock is so cheap right now, it’s overwhelming. It should be bought and bought very aggressively, right now.” [Bloomberg TV]
One way I like to imagine the world is that there’s sort of a constant […]
Earlier today, KKR announced that former Morgan Stanley Chairman and CEO John Mack will be joining the private equity firm as a senior adviser, “supporting new investing activities and providing counsel to KKR portfolio companies.” Including the new gig, Mack is now working three jobs, the others being “part-time adviser” to Morgan Stanley and author (as previously noted, he’s working on a book). And while it’s nice to see him keeping busy, you know what these little diversions don’t leave a lot of time for? Going after his dream.
As you may recall, back in December Mack told a room full of Morgan Stanley employees that if he hadn’t become a banker, he would have been a women’s shoe salesman and that in the years since he chose one path over another, the former has never come close to replacing the latter when it comes to things that light a fire inside him. Even when he was CEO of Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley, Mack found time to stop by Bergdorf Goodman and “watch the fierce New York ladies trying on Manolo Blahniks,” often advising them on what to purchase, based on which pairs spoke to him and which did not (“Those– those are the ones. Get them,” he would say with undeniably certainty). Which was why, Mack said with a glimmer in his eye, his retirement would include being a “part-time salesman at Berdorf’s.”
And, yet, here we are, more than three months later, and no such job has been procured. What’s more, a spokeswoman for the department store has said that despite possessing an undeniable love and appreciation for shoes and being a born salesman, in order to work the floor, Mack would have to go through the same training program, just like everyone else, and he hasn’t even filled out the application to do so.
Why the hold up? It seems pretty obvious that when it comes to the thing that makes him feel alive someone is scared. Not scared to fail– hell, he knows he can move that product. But scared the reality won’t live up to the dream. Scared that years from now, selling shoes will just be a slog like everything else. So he takes these bull shit little advisory jobs so he can say he “just doesn’t have the time” when the topic comes up, knowing full well that he goes to sleep at night and wakes up in the morning thinking about women’s shoes and that nothing, and we mean nothing, will ever compare to feeling he’ll get running back and forth to the stock room juggling six different styles in 3 different sizes, working his ass off to make that sale. The sooner he realizes that, the better. He obviously told the MS people about his little-known passion/plan for reason: to make himself accountable. If you see Mack today or next week or the week after, [tell him to go for it.]
John Mack To Join KKR As Senior Adviser [Deal Journal]
Besides double-teaming customers.
The men weren’t promised “whatever they wanted” for $1,000. That implies that you’re giving up control. There’s an understanding that we’d do basic, normal things. Sometimes the clients wanted a threesome. That’s part of the job. Plus, that would cost them $2,000. I know threesomes make some women blush, but a lot of men want them. I’d talk to the other girl after, but it’s not like we’d talk about our feelings about being hookers. We didn’t grab a coffee together.
You can read the Jamie Dimon “Don’t gloat about how bad Goldman is. Did you hear me? Don’t gloat about how BAD GOLDMAN IS. The fact that GOLDMAN is BAD is of no interest to our clients. Or the press. Don’t leak this to the press!” memo two ways. One is, y’know, what it sounds like: Dimon gets to score some easy/meta points by spreading it around that his business practices are so superior that he doesn’t even need to spread it around that his business practices are superior. The other is that making money off of clients isn’t something invented at Goldman Sachs and anyone at JPMorgan who throws stones is likely to be clonked on the forehead by a ricochet. (Or possibly by a deranged fictional whistleblower!*)
Since being arrested nine days ago, accused madam Anna Gristina/Scotland has made a bunch of […]
William Bryan Jennings, the co-head of North American fixed-income capital markets at Morgan Stanley who is currently on leave, appeared in court today (wearing “a blue suit, white shirt and patterned tie”) to plead not guilty to assault and hate-crime charges. Those charges would be the ones that resulted from an incident in which he took a cab from Manhattan to Connecticut (with a fateful stop for snacks), got into a dispute with the driver over the fare, and “accidentally” stabbed the guy with a pen knife. According to Bloomberg, following the plea, WBJ and his lawyer “drove away in a pickup truck.”
Despite telling Morgan Stanley’s legal counsel that he and Anna Gristina/Scotland were merely “friends” as […]
Earlier today it was reported that the Morgan Stanley employee who was helping Upper East […]
Earlier this morning it was reported that Morgan Stanley “reviewed its visitor logs” upon hearing that one of its employees was supposedly conducting business with Anna Gristina/Scotland, a purveyor of prostitutes, when she was arrested this week. In the event the bank is still on the hunt, Charlie Gasparino claims to have a name.
“…the executive involved with UES madam has been identified as David Walker, a broker in the midtown office. He has not been charged and didn’t return calls. Morgan Stanley has no comment.”
Not to be confused with this guy.
Remember Anna Gristina/Scotland? To recap, she’s the entrepreneur we were introduced to yesterday whose business hit a bit of a stumbling block when she was arrested by the Manhattan DA and charged with “promoting prostitution” out of her firm’s global headquarters, a whorehouse on East 78th Street. Gristina/Scotland is currently on Riker’s Island, having been unable to post bail, set at $2 million but prior to all this going down, she she was just a (self-described) CEO with big plans and an outlook not so different from her colleagues in the business world. Before being nailed as part of a 5-year investigation, a typical day for Anna included:
– Cursing her commute: “She hated coming to the city,” a friend told the Post.
– Reminding people she was running a Fortune 500 company here: She bragged to her old friends back in Scotland that she was “building an empire.” “I’m a CEO,” she wrote to one pal from her early days in the ancient village of Kirkliston. “Takes a lot of work,” she told another.
– Meeting with colleagues to discuss expansion plans, financing options, and potential IPO timeline: On the morning she was arrested, Gristina/Scotland was “with a friend and Morgan Stanley banker, having been to his office for a meeting to try to raise money to finance what prosecutors believe may be an online prostitution business.” (Anna’s lawyers argue she “was setting up a legal dating business, hoping to rival online titan Match.com.”)
– Bitching about Obama and how the guy’s adolescent perspective of carried interest was going to screw her over: “Hoping to survive Obama,” she said in 2008. “Obama wants people like me to support the rest of America by taxing me more than I am already.”
Dig a little deeper and you’ll presumably also find Gristina/Scotland also conducted quarterly earnings calls with investors, used all kinds of financial metrics to measure performance of her hooker employees, plotted acquisitions, and tried to cut costs while expanding her global footprint. Basically, she was building a multi-billion dollar company here and if anyone thinks she’s not going to fight these charges and come back stronger they think wrong.
UES madam had millionaire clients, led life of suburban mom [NYP]
Anna Gristina: Suburban mom or high-rolling madam? [AP]
Suspected Manhattan madam Anna Gristina bragged to old friends in Scotland that she was ‘building an empire’ [NYDN]
Earlier: Manhattan DA Pumps The Brakes On Mom/Madam’s Brothel Just As It Was About To Really Take Off With The Help Of Her Contacts In The Business World
[caption id="attachment_69903" align="alignleft" width="240" caption="HQ on East 78th Street"][/caption]As the entrepreneurial among us know, successful, brand name business don’t just happen overnight. They take blood, sweat, tears and in some cases, other bodily fluids, that the public never sees. Anna Gristina was nearly there. The mother of four (who went by the name “Anna Scotland” professionally) had been providing hookers for to “wealthy, powerful men” (“politicians, top-law enforcement, influential lawyers, bankers, entertainment execs and Fortune 500 businessmen”) out of an Upper East Side whorehouse for a decade and a half, had developed a thriving client list willing to pay between $1000 (for a “Dream Girl”) to $2000+ (for an “Ultimate Elite Model”) per appointment, and made millions in the process. She was ready for the big time. Just the other day, in fact, Gristina/Scotland was sitting down at the office of her friend and business associate, a Morgan Stanley employee, to hear his plan for “expanding her operation through the Internet.” And then this happened.
The petite, blond Gristina was caught on wiretaps claiming “to have made millions over the 15 or so years she has been in business as a madam,” Linehan said, according to newly released transcripts of the Feb. 23 hearing…Known in the industry as “Anna Scotland,’’ the Scottish native was nailed as part of a five-year investigation by the DA’s Official Corruption Unit, which probes NYPD and other uniformed officers for possible misconduct. At one point, Gristina was caught on tape saying her law-enforcement pals were “poised to help her out, to let her know if there is trouble on the front that she needs to be concerned about, particularly back during the Eliot Spitzer investigation,” Linehan said, referring to the former governor’s hooker scandal. An arrest warrant was issued for Gristina last month.
When cops arrived at her upstate home, where she rescues wild pigs and raises pit bulls, they didn’t find anyone — but a wild boar chased a police officer around, the sources said. Gristina was nabbed soon after in the office of a Morgan Stanley banker and “close friend.’’
It’s unclear if the friend was part of MS’s dominant tech team (and was entertaining Gristina/Scotland at HQ*) but knowing they tend to go after big fish companies about to pop it’s highly probable.**
*I know the tech team is based in California– MAYBE THIS DEAL WAS SO HUGE THE GUY WANTED TO INTRODUCE GRISTINA/SCOTLAND TO BIG JIM.
**In our minds. Just let us have this.
“Jennings asked him to stop somewhere for food before taking the highway, so he took […]
The daily Seamless stipend is considered sacred for employees, and any abuse of the system appears generally overlooked by higher-ups. When Lehman Brothers went under, for instance, Morgan Stanley lowered the Seamless limit from $30 to $25, much to the anger of workers. “People went nuts,” recalls a former employee. “Every so often there were these fireside chats with [Morgan Stanley CEO] John Mack ‘Da Knife’ and a collection of analysts. One of the women on the call asked Mack to raise the limit to $30 again. Mack, not really having paid much attention to expenses, was surprised to hear it had been reduced. Concerned, he asked her why she needed $30 instead of just $25. She said that with the new reduction, ‘I can’t order my Perrier anymore.'” The next day, as legend has it, there was an entire case of Perrier on her desk–courtesy of John Mack.
In related news, the Morgan Stanley Seamless stipend is currently at $20. And while filing formal complaints at the top might have worked when MS was a free-for-all orgy of sparkling water and Italian pastries and whatever else your heart desired,** anyone considering pleading his/her case to James Gorman re: why this just won’t do should also think about boxing their shit up first, lest a hasty exit be necessary.
**Particularly if what your heart desired was a pair of fierce as fuck shoes.
William Bryan Jennings is the co-head of North American fixed-income capital markets at Morgan Stanley, though his responsibilities have been passed onto a coworker for the time being until a particular matter is “resolved.” That matter would be a cab ride he took on the evening of December 22, which resulted in Jennings being charged with “second-degree assault, theft of services and second-degree intimidation based on race or bigotry.” At present, there are two conflicting stories about what happened.
According to the cabbie, Jennings was driven from Manhattan to his home in Darien, CT, at which point he refused to pay the $200 cab fare and instead began “threatening the driver and using racial slurs,” before intentionally stabbing the guy’s hand with a “pen knife” that he “uses for fishing.” According to Jennings’ lawyer, upon arriving at in Connecticut, WBJ, who colleagues have described as the “nicest guy you’ll meet,” was appalled to learn of the “exorbitant amount” the driver was charging (which WBJ claims had been upped to $300). After refusing to pay, the driver supposedly told Jennings he was “going to take him back to the city,” at which point Jennings pulled out the pen knife he had on him and “demanded to be let out of the car because he was fearful for his safety,” cutting the driver who WBJ “did not intend to hurt” after he put his hand through the dividing window. Jennings’ lawyer has 1) denied the racial slurs and 2) said it’s “mind-boggling” that his client was charged and not the other way around (though, according to reports, the driver called the police at 12:30am to report the incident, and Jennings never did).
As none of us were there at the time, we should refrain from speculating as to which half of the he said/he said is telling the truth. Though clearly there are a couple of important takeaways here, including but not limited to the fact that if one is going to snub the Metro North, one should expect to pay, figuratively but more so literally. Manhattan to Connecticut? I’ve had rides from the UWS to Midtown East cost upwards of $40. Let’s not do this dance.
Gorman doesn’t fit the image of a Wall Street titan. Notwithstanding his $10.5 million pay […]