Weddings: the time to woo clients
Back in the day, us bankers would go to any lengths to win new business. Marathon drinking sessions with issuers – check. A promise of internships to their nieces, nephews or neighbours – check that off too. But while such enticements have now been severely curtailed, a friend surprised me with his latest adventure.
They say desperate times call for desperate measures and for this chap, the time was desperate. An issuer that he was trying to encourage to list in Hong Kong was simply not taking the bait, with the CEO rejecting all my friend’s calls, declining overtures for a meeting and just refusing to interact.
But my buddy was not going to be let off so easily. When days turned to weeks, he still had not given up and had taken to Google-stalking the CEO as much as possible. And one day, he hit jackpot, hearing over the capital markets grapevine that the CEO was preparing for his daughter’s wedding at one of the finest hotels in Hong Kong.
Having wheedled the date and time of the occasion from his source, my friend parked himself outside the venue, ready to accost the client. And lady luck was on his side. After managing to gate-crash the party, the chap found himself face-to-face with the CEO. And the company head – not wanting to disrupt his beloved daughter’s wedding – had no choice but to smile and welcome the unexpected guest and promise him an appointment.
Whether my friend coaxed the company into working with him on an IPO I don’t know, but he certainly gets an A for persistence.