Silicon Valley Bank's chief executive and financial officers quit amid turnaround efforts

Alvarez and Marsal's Nicholas Grossi appointed interim chief financial officer to oversee lender's restructuring

Silicon Valley Bank, once the go-to bank for technology entrepreneurs and start-ups, is undergoing bankruptcy proceedings. Reuters
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The chief executive and chief financial officers of Silicon Valley Bank have resigned, amid efforts to turn around the collapsed US lender, a regulatory filing shows.

Chief executive Gregory Becker, who is also a director at SVB, left his post on April 19, while Daniel Beck, the chief financial officer, quit on April 18, SVB said in its filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday.

Mr Becker also agreed to provide consulting services to SVB “on an as-needed basis, at no cost to the company”, according to the filing.

The resignations of the two top officers came after embattled SVB appointed professional services company Alvarez and Marsal (A&M) to lead its restructuring efforts.

Nicholas Grossi, managing director of A&M's North American commercial restructuring unit in Chicago, was named as SVB's interim chief financial officer on April 20, the SEC filing showed.

He comes armed with experience in leading the turnaround in companies from industries including financial services, oil and gas, manufacturing, transportation, health care, automotive, chemicals, eduction and recycling, according to A&M's website. Among his most notable clients are Bank of America, the New York Department of Education and Sears Holdings.

Mr Grossi, who will also serve as SVB's principal accounting officer, also specialises in operational due diligence, operations management, cash flow forecasting and cash monitoring programme development, business plan preparation and review, evaluation of organisational issues, stakeholder negotiations and recapitalisation alternatives.

California-based SVB was the go-to bank for technology entrepreneurs and start-ups. At its peak, it was the 16th-largest bank in the US and the biggest in Silicon Valley, a global centre for technology and innovation.

It is now undergoing bankruptcy proceedings after it was seized by US regulators following a bank run that caused its collapse, and was placed on receivership in March. Later that month, the US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation confirmed that North Carolina-based First Citizens Bank & Trust would acquire SVB's assets.

It ended up as the second biggest bank failure in US history, after Washington Mutual's collapse in 2008 that triggered the global financial crisis.

It also became the starting point for a series of bank collapses in the US, including Silvergate Capital and Signature Bank, both of which are heavily involved in the technology sector, as well as midsized bank First Republic.

There have been 563 bank failures in the US from 2001 to 2023, with 414 occurring between 2008 to 2011 alone and peaking at 157 in 2010, latest data from the US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation shows.

Adding fuel to the fire was the financial troubles of Credit Suisse, considered one of the global systemically important banks, after its top shareholder said it would not be adding further investment. Fellow Swiss bank UBS agreed to buy its smaller rival for $3.2 billion to try to avoid more turmoil in global financial markets.

The odds of a recession in the US have also risen as a result of the debacle, which has raised concerns about the overall health of the banking sector in the world's biggest economy, Jamie Dimon, chief executive of America's biggest lender, JP Morgan Chase, had warned earlier this month.

Updated: April 22, 2023, 11:05 AM