Lead Left Interview – Tom Cassidy (Part 2)

This week we chat with Tom Cassidy, Managing Director, US Bank. Mr. Cassidy is responsible for private equity Sponsor Finance Group originations and has been in the leveraged finance world for over thirty years. Before US Bank, he worked at JP Morgan Chase and at BNP Paribas. Second of two parts – View part one

The Lead Left: What’s your view on energy related borrowers?

Tom Cassidy: Energy has not been an area of focus for us with PE firms and we have very little exposure to Energy related credits in Sponsor Finance.

TLL: Are you seeing deterioration in covenants? Structures?

TC: In the lower middle market we are seeing the non-bank direct lenders offering unprecedented leverage to companies with less than $20mill ebitda. Covenant lite has not been a factor in the lower middle market.

TLL: Back to your private equity clients, how do they view US Bank when it comes to leading deals? Can you remain competitive with the non-banks?  

TC: We lead two thirds of our transactions for PE clients. Our clients value the strength of US Bank, our commitment to a long term relationship and the deep experience of our Sponsor Finance and Loan Capital Markets professionals. Our PE clients are attracted to the commitment we have to building a deep relationship over the long term with their portfolio companies by providing best in class credit and debt capital markets, treasury services, foreign exchange, derivatives and private banking services.