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Lazard director joins ex-Credit Suisse execs’ firm to focus on secondaries

Aviditi Advisors was launched by Ryan Schlitt and John Robertshaw, veterans of the Swiss investment bank.

A director from Lazard‘s private capital advisory group has left the investment bank to join a firm founded by two former Credit Suisse fundraising veterans, Secondaries Investor has learned.

New York-based Ryan Binette is set to join Aviditi Advisors, according to two sources familiar with the matter. It is unclear when he still start his role.

Binette left Lazard in mid-September, according to one of the sources.

Aviditi was formed by ex-Credit Suisse fundraisers Ryan Schlitt and John Robertshaw, sister publication Buyouts reported in February. The firm is backed by a family office in Texas, Buyouts noted, citing sources familiar with the matter.

It has more than 30 employees across five offices and describes itself as a “full life cycle, client-driven firm focused on providing tailored solutions across capital formation, capital solutions, advisory services and liquidity solutions”, according to its website.

Binette has both sellside and buyside experience, having spent almost six years at Pomona Capital prior to joining Lazard in 2011, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Schlitt spent almost two decades at Credit Suisse until May last year, his LinkedIn profile shows. He worked out of Dallas and was responsible for the US south-east and south-west, as well as client development in Central and South America, according to his biography in a North Carolina Treasury report.

Robertshaw spent 16 years at Credit Suisse until 2016 and held roles including vice-chairman, managing director within the bank’s private fund group, as well as co-head of the same unit, according to his LinkedIn profile. He also co-founded iCapital Network, which connects wealthy individuals with private equity and hedge fund managers.

Binette’s appointment is the latest in a flurry of movement in the sellside community. On Tuesday Secondaries Investor reported that a founding partner of Greenhill’s private capital advisory business, Stephen Sloan, was leaving the firm to join Portfolio Advisors.

Michael Song, a Secondaries Investor Young Gun, had also left Greenhill last month to join the same firm.

Duff & Phelps’s former secondaries advisory team resurfaced this week at Swiss interdealer broker Tradition and is understood to have a mandate to sell around $1 billion-worth of private markets stakes, as Secondaries Investor reported.

Lazard’s private capital advisory business is led by Holcombe Green. Green was appointed to the role in the second half of last year and is responsible for private equity, private debt and real estate fundraising, as well as secondaries advisory.

A spokesman for Aviditi did not return requests for comment. A spokeswoman for Lazard did not respond to a request for comment. Binette did not return a request for comment.

– Chris Witkowsky contributed to this article.