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Guggenheim Builds Out Restructuring Unit With Millstein Purchase

The founder of Millstein & Co., a restructuring and sovereign wealth advisory firm, will join Guggenheim Securities as co-chairman.

Guggenheim Partners has joined other big asset managers this year in making acquisitions that will build out areas of business targeted for growth.

The firm announced Thursday that its New York-based investment banking and capital markets division, Guggenheim Securities, is buying Millstein & Co., a restructuring and sovereign wealth advisory firm. Terms of the deal, expected to close during the third quarter, were not disclosed.

The purchase of Millstein will help Guggenheim build out the restructuring business that it started about six years ago, when it hired Ronen Bojmel from restructuring firm Miller Buckfire & Co. to expand the practice.

“In a world awash in debt, the need for creative solutions to help businesses, governments and investors avoid or mitigate the adverse impacts of financial distress is as great today as ever,” Jim Millstein, the founder and chief executive office of Millstein, said in the announcement. “The combination with Guggenheim will give us access to a deep bench of talented investment bankers to better serve the needs of our clients.”

He will join Guggenheim Securities as its co-chairman, serving alongside Alan Schwartz. 

“Jim brings an extensive history of senior leadership, a deep understanding of markets, and an unparalleled reputation as an innovative thought partner with his clients,” Schwartz said in the statement. “Jim and his team of highly talented bankers share our approach to advising clients and values core to our firm.”

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Before founding his advisory firm, Millstein worked as the chief restructuring officer for the U.S. Department of the Treasury between 2009 and 2011, overseeing the department's investment in the financial sector in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Prior to that, he worked as managing director and co-head of global restructuring at Lazard. 

Under the deal, Bojmel, who oversaw the launch of Guggenheim’s restructuring practice in 2012, will lead the combined restructuring team.

“With the addition of Jim’s team to Guggenheim, we are excited to build on the significant success of our restructuring and liability management practice and to further Guggenheim’s reputation as a premier restructuring brand,” Mark Van Lith, co-CEO of Guggenheim, said in the statement. 

Other asset managers, including LaSalle Investment Management and BlackRock, have been acquisitive in recent months. LaSalle announced at the end of May that it was buying the real estate multi-manager business of rival Aviva Investors, while BlackRock said in April that it was acquiring private credit business Tennenbaum Capital Partners.

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