Mesirow adds to municipals team on coasts

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CHICAGO – Chicago-based Mesirow Financial is bulking up its municipal team with several hires on both coasts.

Out west, the firm last week added Neal Mathisen, a senior vice president, to its institutional sales and trading group. He’s a veteran of another Chicago-based firm -- William Blair – that shed its municipal practice this summer.

Mathisen is reuniting with his former Blair colleague Christoper Tota, a managing director, who joined Mesirow in March prior to Blair’s exit from the business. Both had joined Blair in 2014 from De La Rosa after its acquisition by Stifel Financial Corp. Tota headed up Blair’s bond trading nationally and had led institutional sales and trading at De La Rosa.

The two will primarily focus on West Coast municipal securities sales and trading from the firm’s Santa Monica, California office.

Out East, Eliseo Sampayo joined the firm from Jefferies as a senior salesperson in the firm’s New York office.

"We are excited about the continuous growth and expansion of our capital markets business nationally," Mesirow president Dominick Mondi said in a statement.

The latest hires bring to eight the number of professionals the firm has hired this year in its municipal and public finance groups. The firm opened a Hartford office with two former Blair bankers. “We are looking to strategically grow and leverage our businesses; wherever that takes us is where we will go,” said firm spokeswoman Syreeta Harris Strickland.

The independent, employee-owned firm that was founded in 1937 has additional public finance offices in Indianapolis, Houston, Hartford, and San Francisco and employs about 16 professionals in its public finance banking group. The firm last year said its institutional sales and trading department had a total of more than 150 employees with desks specializing in municipals, rates, corporates, preferred and non-agency mortgages.

The firm is ranked 24th so far this year among senior managers nationally with 45 issues valued at $1.44 billion, according to data from Thomson Reuters. The firm said it recently surpassed the $1 billion year-to-date mark in its competitive underwriting volume business. The firm ranked 29th among senior managers last year working on 76 deals valued at $1.9 billion and in Illinois ranked 11th with 37 deals valued at $543 million.

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