MUFG hires restaurant bankers away from Wells Fargo

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group has hired a team of bankers away from Wells Fargo in a bid to beef up its restaurant finance business.

Managing Director Nick Cole, one of the new hires, will lead the newly expanded group, which sits within the corporate and investment banking division, and will report to Scott Hagel, MUFG’s head of U.S. general industries. Managing Director Quinn Hall will oversee loan underwriting and portfolio management and will report to Cole.

Managing Director Brian Geraghty, who has been with MUFG’s restaurant finance group for eight years, will become head of loan originations and will also report to Cole.

The U.S. arm of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group has hired nine bankers from Wells Fargo in an effort to bolster its restaurant lending unit.

Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

The U.S. restaurant industry earned close to $660 billion in revenue last year, though that was some $240 billion below the expected level, according to the National Restaurant Association. MUFG, which has $344 billion in U.S. assets, said in its announcement Monday that it has recently focused on well-known brands in the quick-serve and fast-casual segments.

“We expect the growth of these segments, which have performed well during the COVID-19 pandemic, to accelerate as the pandemic subsides and provide opportunity for us,” Hagel said in a press release. “Additionally, we will leverage the experience of our newly hired talent to expand our platform to other franchise concepts beyond restaurants.”

Cole and Hall each have over 25 years of experience with investment banking in the restaurant industry, MUFG said.

The other new hires include: Managing Director Joe Rinaldi, Managing Director Eric Schnyder, Director Emily Sutton, Director Matt Kochan, Director Zac Kalemba, Vice President Luis Victorio and Associate Mike Le.

The new hires all begin on June 1. The combined group will operate from San Diego, Chicago, Atlanta and Boston.

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