The Wall Street Journal reports that Salomon Smith Barney has walked away from the bidding to underwrite the IPO of National Financial Partners as the company is run by Jessica Bibloiwicz, the daughter of Citigroup CEO Sandy Weill.
Salomon withdrew from the underwriting process as it was thought politic to do so. With all the allegations of conflict swirling around Citigroup, the last thing that Sandy Weill would have wanted was further complications in connection with a company run by his daughter. You can just see the headlines and accusations now. The underwriting work will go instead to Goldman, Merrill and JP Morgan.
A spokesman for Salomon said that 'Sandy and Jessica agreed together that it was appropriate to use other bankers.' The move is regarded as a shrewd one by analysts and commentators. The company will raise around $150m when it goes public some time next year.
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