Citic Securities said it will continue to invest in its wholly owned international brokerage CLSA in an effort to grow it’s advisory and asset management capability in countries covered by China’s “Belt and Road Initiative”.

Zhang Youjun, Chairman of both Citic Securities and CLSA, said senior management at the state-owned brokerage felt “regretful” and “sad” to see the departure of long-serving CLSA Chief Executive Jonathan Slone, who tendered his resignation on Wednesday citing
“family ­reasons”.

Earlier in the week, media reports speculated about Slone’s departure, citing a culture clash at the brokerage amid an ongoing compensation overhaul.

“I have tried to save Jonathan from leaving for a long time”

“Jonathan has worked his whole life for CLSA, he has made a lot of contributions to Citic Securities, especially during the merger of two companies,” Zhang said, referring to Citic Securities’ 2013 acquisition of the Hong Kong ­brokerage from France’s Credit Agricole.

Chief Slone.
Photo: Chief Executive of CLSA – Mr. Jonathan Slone.

It is regrettable that Jonathan has decided to resign, and I feel very sad about his departure.

“We will work together to seek a successor for the chief executive role,” Zhang said.

The Chairman’s comments came after the brokerage reported, that net profit for 2018 dropped 17.9 percent to 9.39 billion yuan (HK$10.97 billion), amid downbeat equities markets and fewer initial public offerings.

Fees from IPOs on the A-share market, which account for two-fifths of revenue, were down 8.1 percent to 17.42 billion yuan.