A branch office of Bank of America in New York. The bank hired Saud Al Tassan to head investment banking in Saudi Arabia. Image Credit: AP

New York: Bank of America Corp. hired Saud Al Tassan to head investment banking in Saudi Arabia, according to people familiar with the matter, as global institutions expand in the kingdom to tap opportunities.

Al Tassan, previously chief executive officer of local financial-services firm Swicorp, joined in October and is the first person to hold the position, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. He also worked at NCB Capital and Banque Saudi Fransi, according to an internal memo seen by Bloomberg, which was confirmed by a bank spokeswoman.

Bank of America is one of more than 20 institutions working on Saudi Aramco’s initial public offering, which is expected to be the biggest ever. The mammoth deal, as well as the potential of dozens of other privatisation, M&A deals and share sales, is prompting banks such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. to open and boost headcount in the kingdom.

Societe Generale SA appointed Amine Jaoui as chief executive officer in Saudi Arabia, Bloomberg News has reported, while Citigroup plans to add five more bankers in the country. Goldman Sachs hired Eyas AlDossari from HSBC Holdings Plc to head its investment banking business in Saudi Arabia and poached Mohammad Al Awad from the British lender to head its equities business in the kingdom.