Life back in the City: Stonehill returns as a headhunter

January 12, 2012

Charles Stonehill, who led the Americas investment banking team at Credit Suisse First Boston and ran global capital markets at Lazard during his 30-year career before joining an electric car start-up firm in 2009, is back, after reinventing himself as an executive headhunter.

Oxford University modern history graduate Stonehill, who holds dual US and UK citizenship, has just started work as the head of the financial services practice at Greenwich, Connecticut-based executive recruiter RSR Partners, a move that he hopes will “allow me to connect with the global world of finance I grew up in while tackling new challenges”.

Stonehill, who will also run RSR’s new office in New York, has known the firm’s leaders since his time at CSFB, where he spent six years as head of Americas investment banking. He believes his experience both in the banking sector and outside it – from early 2009 until last year he was chief financial officer at American-Israeli electric car firm Better Place – has taught him about “the critical difference it makes to organizations to have the right people in the right positions”.

Stonehill began his career in oil and gas investment banking at JP Morgan in 1978, before subsequently becoming head of European equity and equity capital markets at Morgan Stanley. Then came the CSFB stint, before a move to Lazard, where he was global head of capital markets and a member of the firm’s executive committee.

He left front-line banking behind upon leaving Lazard in 2004, according to his LinkedIn profile, but has remained involved in the finance industry since, with board roles at Switzerland’s Julius Baer Group and UK broker Panmure Gordon, where he was chairman between 2006 and 2008.

Stonehill’s investment banking skills were also put to use at Better Place, which focuses on building electric vehicle infrastructure networks allowing vehicle owners to recharge as easily as at a petrol station. During his time at the company, it raised hundreds of millions of dollars in equity capital from institutional investors including units of Lazard and Morgan Stanley.

Since leaving the firm, he set up Green & Blue Advisors, which provides financial advice cleantech and environmentally-minded companies.

Russell Reynolds Jr, founder and chairman of RSR, said in a statement announcing Stonehill’s hire that the former banker will add “unique substance, experience and knowledge to our existing financial group”. He added that Stonehill’s range of experience will be a good match for the leadership searches carried out by RSR, which focuses on advising chief executives and boards on C-suite recruitment.
Stonehill could not immediately be reached for comment.

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Published in 1/11/12

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