ZURICH - UBS AG is "delighted" with the smooth progress of its integration of the U.S. brokerage firm Paine Webber Group Inc., which it bought for $11.8 billion this month, UBS chief financial officer Luqman Arnold said Tuesday.
"Reception among Paine Webber staff has been excellent. There wasn't any unforeseen turnover," Mr. Arnold told journalists during a phone conference after the release of third-quarter earnings details.
Mr. Arnold, who will become president of the combined company's executive board next year, said 98% of the Paine Webber employees who were offered jobs at UBS have accepted them.
He declined to indicate how many jobs were offered but said UBS wanted to keep everyone in the private-client business, where there was no overlap between the two companies' businesses.
"What is significant is that we keep all but 2%" of the executives, Mr. Arnold said. There was more overlap in the fixed-income business, but the equity business was also very complementary, he said. "We now have as many senior equity analysts as any bulge-bracket investment firm."
Staff retention at UBS in the wake of the Paine Webber deal seems better than at Credit Suisse Group, which announced a $12.2 billion deal for the U.S. investment bank Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette in September.
Credit Suisse said that about 90% of the Donaldson employees to whom it has made offers agreed to join the post-merger company. Since the deal was announced, however, some prominent executives at Credit Suisse and Donaldson have left.
A week ago UBS announced it had hired Kenneth D. Moelis as managing director and co-head of investment banking for the Americas. Mr. Moelis previously held a similar post at Credit Suisse First Boston Corp.
His departure was announced just a few days after Garrett Moran, formerly co-head of investment banking at Donaldson, announced he would take a leave of absence instead of the job offered by Credit Suisse First Boston.
Other senior Donaldson bankers who have rejected offers to join Credit Suisse include Herald Ritch, who would have become a co-head of mergers, and Louis Friedman, head of media and telecom banking at Donaldson.