Complex Made Simple

Merrill Lynch appoints Fares D. Noujaim president of Middle East & North Africa

Merrill Lynch announced that Fares D. Noujaim will be joining the company as president of the firm's business in the Middle East & North Africa. He will also be the global head of Sovereign Wealth Funds.

Mr. Noujaim will be based in the Middle East and New York, and he will report to Gregory J. Fleming, president and chief operating officer of Merrill Lynch.

“I am very pleased that Fares is joining Merrill Lynch and will lead our efforts in this tremendously important area,” said John A. Thain, chairman and chief executive officer of Merrill Lynch. “The Middle East is one of the world’s most vibrant growth markets and sovereign wealth funds are rapidly gaining significance globally.”

“Fares is one of the most respected and knowledgeable leaders in the financial services industry with over 24 years of experience. He will bring significant expertise to Merrill Lynch’s management team,” said Mr. Fleming. “His many years of relationship management experience will help ensure the delivery of the firm’s fully integrated capabilities to clients in the Middle East and to sovereign wealth funds around the world.”

Mr. Noujaim will be joining Merrill Lynch from Bear, Stearns & Co., Inc., where he was vice chairman of the board of directors and a member of the firm’s President’s Advisory Committee, having previously served as the committee’s chairman.

As one of Bear Stearns’ senior-most investment banking officers, Mr. Noujaim was instrumental in leading successful transactions for a number of Fortune 25 companies, particularly in the automotive and telecommunications sectors; he advised on M&A transactions valued at over $300bn, most recently advising Thomson on the $17bn acquisition of Reuters. Additionally, he facilitated financings totaling in excess of $1trillion.

After joining Bear Stearns in 1987, Fares was named global head of the firm’s Capital Markets Group in 1992. Prior to joining Bear Stearns, he was an analyst with Goldman Sachs from 1985 to 1987.

Merrill Lynch is one of the world’s leading wealth management, capital markets and advisory companies, with offices in 40 countries and territories and total client assets of approximately $1.6trillion.

As an investment bank, it is a leading global trader and underwriter of securities and derivatives across a broad range of asset classes and serves as a strategic advisor to corporations, governments, institutions and individuals worldwide.

Merrill Lynch owns approximately half of BlackRock, one of the world’s largest publicly traded investment management companies, with more than $1trillion in assets under management.