Banker who advised Wirecard chief’s family office leaves UniCredit

A senior investment banker who acted as a financial adviser to former Wirecard boss Markus Braun has left her job at UniCredit following revelations about the business relationship.

Jana Hecker has left UniCredit, the Italian bank told the Financial Times, confirming a staff memo sent late on Tuesday that said Luca Falco, head of global syndicate and capital markets, was taking on her role as head of equity capital markets on an interim basis “with immediate effect”.

Hecker declined to comment. She had previously worked at Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank and joined UniCredit last March.

Last year, Hecker helped to arrange loans on behalf of Braun’s family office in the run-up to Wirecard’s collapse. The work was separate from her job at UniCredit.

Details of the arrangement were reported by the FT on Friday. She never received an anticipated €790,000 fee due to Wirecard’s collapse weeks later, according to people briefed on the details.

Between February and May 2020, she advised the former Wirecard chief executive on the refinancing of €110m in loans that Deutsche Bank wanted to terminate. In this capacity, she interacted with Wall Street banks and private equity firms on Braun’s behalf, billing a total of 156 hours of work.

Hecker charged Braun a day rate of €5,000 and a success-related payout, according to documents reviewed by the FT. Her work led to two loans with tiny German lender Oldenburgische Landesbank and an investment fund controlled by German entrepreneur Oliver Samwer, chief executive of Rocket Internet.

In an email to Braun’s sister Marlies Braun on June 1 last year after the successful refinancing, Hecker pointed to her contractual agreement with the family office that entitled her to about €100,000 in fixed pay and a performance-related bonus of between €510,000 and €870,000.

An email Marlies Braun sent to her brother two days later suggested a payment to Hecker of about €790,000 for the work carried out.

Braun had previously worked with Hecker while she was employed by Deutsche, where she helped set up his margin loan from the lender.

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