Weiss nominated by Obama to crack-down tax inversions – his previous portfolio includes companies like Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL)


Antonio Weiss, who is the Lazard Ltd’s Global investment banking head, was recently nominated by President Obama to act as domestic finance’s undersecretary for the Treasury Department. Lazard Ltd is an independent company that acts as financial adviser and it has been indulged in a number of tax-inversion transactions over the years. Tax –inversion is a method by which different companies reduce their taxes by shifting the address they use for business outside the country. Weiss has been a very active and important part of Lazard over the years.

In-between attempts of tax inversion Obama nominates Weiss to figure out tax inversions

Almost a week after the midterm congressional elections, the White House unveiled Obama’s inclination of nominating Weiss  to a position that is amongst the top of the finance post. Spume democrats tried to counter corporate tax inversions; however, Obama’s administration is in favour of cracking down tax inversions.

Weiss’s nomination is very likely to get accepted from the senate because of his association with the Democratic Party as a prominent Wall Street donor. If Weiss’s nomination gets approved than he will be assisting the Treasury Department policies on debt financing, banking, regulations and capital markets. Along with that he will also take care of Consumer Protection and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform and ensure its materialization.

The previous domestic finance’s permanent undersecretary, Mary Miller, left her position last September and Mathew Rutherford took over. Weiss will be taking charge from Mathew Rutherford.

Weiss’s work at Lazard

Wiess had handled a lot of important during his time at Lazard. He got associated with Lazard back in the year 1993 and became the managing director of the company is 1996. From 2006 to 2009 he acted as the European Investment Banking’s vice chairman. He also became the head of merger and acquisitions of Lazard.

During the last 6 years of Weiss’s time at Lazard, he handled many important and major M&A transactions which involved consumer companies based in the U.S.

Reynolds American Inc. (NYSE:RAI) seeked the financial advice of Weiss for acquiring Lorillard Inc. (NYSE:LO) in a deal worth $27 billion. It was a tough deal for Reynolds because the company had to get funds from its largest shareholders – British American Tobacco plc. (LON: BATS) Simultaneously Reynolds was having discussion with the Imperial Tobacco Group (LON: IMT) to sell its cigarettes to the company in order to satisfy the regulators and getting their approval.

Weiss was also one of the major advisors in the merger worth $52 billion that took place in 2008 between Anheuser-Busch and InBev. Last year Weiss also gave advise to Anheuser-Busch InBev NV (NYSE:BUD) for its Grupo Modelo SAB de CV deal worth $20 billion and helped in the merger of the two companies. Weiss also gave advise to Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) for its Motorola Mobility acquisition that was worth $1.25 billion.

These are just a few examples of Weiss immense contribution at Lazard. Now what everyone is waiting to see is how he will perform at his new position if Obama’s nomination gets approved and he becomes the under secretary of domestic finance.