BTIG Jumps into Research Biz

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New York, NY – Earlier this week New York based institutional broker-dealer, BTIG, announced that it was expanding its business by adding a fundamental equity research group.  The firm hired research industry veterans Richard Greenfield and Walter Piecyk to head up the effort.

Greenfield and Piecyk, both previously with Pali Capital and Fulcrum Global Partners, have been tasked with setting up an institutional research division initially focused on the telecommunications, media, cable and satellite industries.  The new research group is not expected to produce maintenance research, though it is expected to conduct pre-IPO research, as well as short ideas.

BTIG management explains that the new equity research group should complement the firm’s existing agency brokerage business.


Integrity’s View

BTIG’s foray into the fundamental research business makes considerable sense to the team at Integrity Research Associates.  Many agency brokerage firms like BTIG have been searching for ways to expand their businesses in the past year.  A number of agency brokers experienced rapid growth in commission volumes in the wake of the Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers blow ups.  However, these firms also saw the growth in their commission business slow in 2009 as buy-side traders were loathe to direct more execution business to them unless they could provide more value added services – including equity research.

Of course, this move is also extremely opportunistic as Pali Capital’s merger talks with Braver Stern Securities Corp. broke down and the business is being shuttered, leaving a number of high quality analysts without a home.

Due to these developments, we suspect that other agency brokers will follow a similar path as BTIG by adding some form of research product to their execution platform.  This could be through forming a  partnership with an existing research business that currently doesn’t have a trading desk, or by building their own proprietary research group.

Below is the complete Press Release associated with this development.

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BTIG Launches Equity Research Group

Hires Industry Veterans Richard Greenfield and Walter Piecyk to Lead Initiative

Press Release Source: BTIG LLC On Monday March 1, 2010, 9:00 am EST

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–BTIG LLC, a broker dealer specializing in institutional trading and related brokerage services, today announced the next stage of its strategic growth plan with the launch of its fundamental equity research group. To lead its new research effort, BTIG has hired industry veterans Richard Greenfield and Walter Piecyk.

The expansion into research will further broaden BTIG’s product offering and complements the firm’s existing lines of business. The research group will focus on the media, cable, satellite, and telecom industries. BTIG’s research will provide an independent, objective and thought provoking point of view to assist institutional clients in making strategic investment decisions.

Greenfield and Piecyk previously worked at Pali Capital, where they launched and built a successful research department. Together they bring more than 30 years of experience to BTIG.

“Clients want insightful data points and differentiated analysis to support their investment process,” said Oliver Wiener, Head of Global Resources at BTIG. “Rich and Walt both have strong reputations as top analysts in their respective sectors. They are exceptional additions to the firm and will be instrumental in the continued development and growth of BTIG.”

Greenfield was previously a managing director, media analyst, covering media and cable/satellite industries at Pali Capital. Prior to Pali, he spent four years at Fulcrum Global Partners as a media analyst. Greenfield started his career at Goldman Sachs & Co., where he spent eight years covering entertainment, cable system and leisure industries. Greenfield was named a top stock picker in both the 2007 Wall Street Journal Best on the Street and 2007 Financial Times/Starmine surveys, and was cited as top boutique analyst in 2007 by Institutional Investor magazine. He has a Bachelor of Arts in History from Brandeis University.

Piecyk was previously a managing director, telecoms analyst, covering telecom service provider and communication equipment industries at Pali Capital. Prior to Pali, he spent four years at Fulcrum Global Partners as a wireless services and equipment analyst. Piecyk has also held positions at PaineWebber Inc., where he covered the wireless services and communications equipment industries, and Nextel Communications in corporate development and corporate finance. Piecyk was named a top stock picker in the Wall Street Journal Best on the Street survey in 2007. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

BTIG has taken significant steps recently to continue to build its global franchise, including hiring additional senior professionals in its London, Hong Kong and Australian offices, opening an office in Singapore, launching a fixed income group, and expanding its prime brokerage team in the U.S. Additionally, BTIG has expanded its entire product offering to all 10 of in domestic offices. The firm is built around a broad and experienced group of professionals who are leaders and experts in their respective fields.

About BTIG

BTIG LLC is a premier institutional brokerage and fund services company. Founded in 2002, BTIG, including through its affiliates, employs over 375 professionals around the world. BTIG serves customers from all over the world and offers services from five divisions: Equity Trading, Fixed Income, Prime Brokerage, Outsource Trading, Direct Market Access, Capital Markets, and Corporate Access. BTIG has domestic offices in New York, San Francisco, Dallas, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Greenwich, Red Bank, Aspen and Orinda. The firm also has affiliates in London, Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney.

BTIG LLC is a member of FINRA and SIPC

BTIG Australia Limited ACN 128 554 601 is a member of ASIC and ASX

BTIG Hong Kong Limited, Exchange Participant of SEHK, licensed and regulated by the SFC

BTIG Ltd is a member of the LSE and is authorized and regulated by the FSA

BTIG Singapore Pte. Ltd is registered and licensed with MAS

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