BRADENTON, Fla. — Morgan Stanley plans to open its first public finance office in Atlanta to expand in the Southeast as growth resumes and infrastructure needs ramp up.

Warren “Bo” Daniels Jr., a veteran public finance executive director, will open the new office in mid-July and eventually relocate to Atlanta from Chicago.

Daniels, who joined Morgan Stanley in 2009, will continue to cover major accounts in the Midwest and Northeast as he adds Atlanta and the Southeast region to his coverage area, according to an internal memo from Stratford Shields, head of public finance.

“By establishing a public finance presence in Atlanta, we hope to boost our business in this key growing region of the country,” Shields’ memo said.

Though new bond issuance in many Southeastern states has tapered off the past several years in response to the recession and the slow recovery, Daniels said in an interview that Morgan Stanley believes the region has growing infrastructure needs.

“We see growth for the region as the population of the region continues to grow,” he said. “There is a high correlation over the long run between population growth and debt issuance for infrastructure needs.”

Daniels said moving closer to the region will be an advantage for clients, though those have already included issuers such as Atlanta and the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority.

Expanding Morgan Stanley’s coverage also will help the firm move up the senior manager rankings in the Southeast, he said.

The firm has placed between fourth and seventh place over the last five years, according to Thomson Reuters.

“It is our goal to expand our footprint in the Southeast area and the greater Atlanta area,” Daniels said. “Nationally, Morgan Stanley has been consistently a top-four ranked underwriter for the last several years, and we hope to increase our penetration in the Southeast to that level.”

Before joining Morgan Stanley, Daniels was a partner and head of public finance for six years at Loop Capital Markets. Before that, he was the head of the public finance in Chicago for Goldman, Sachs & Co., where he spent 14 years.

In his 23-year career in public finance, Daniels said he has been the senior banker on more than $30 billion of financings. Clients have included Detroit, Chicago, Cook County, Ill., the District of Columbia and its Water and Sewer Authority, the Chicago Transit Authority, and Cleveland, among others.

Daniels received an undergraduate degree from the University of Southern California and a master of business administration degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Morgan Stanley also has public finance offices in New York, Broward County, Fla., Houston, Denver, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

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