Ed Bagdasarian, left, Tim Wennes, right

Ed Bagdasarian, left, Tim Wennes, right

Los Angeles-based Intrepid Investment Bankers, a regional middle market investment banking firm involved in providing merger and acquisition and capital raising services, was acquired by San Francisco-based MUFG Union Bank, the two companies announced Oct. 18.

Intrepid will work in close partnership with the bank’s commercial banking and wealth markets groups.

This is a new line of business for Union Bank, said Tim Wennes, West Coast president of MUFG Union Bank, in an interview.

MUFG Union Bank, which is the U.S. banking arm of Japanese holding company Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., has 355 branches in the U.S. West.

Intrepid was formed in 2010 by Ed Bagdasarian, Jim Freedman and others who sold a prior company, Barrington Associates, to Wells Fargo in 2006. Wells Fargo bought Wachovia Bank in 2008, and the Barrington partners ultimately departed in 2010 to form Intrepid.

Bagdasarian described the middle market for mergers and acquisitions, capital raising and strategic advisory services to entrepreneurs and middle-market companies in the $50 million to $300 million a year in sales range, as a hot one. “That’s our sweet spot,” Bagdasarian said.

He estimates an average of 15-25 transactions annually, totaling roughly $8 billion worth of deals since the company’s inception in 2010. “Last year was a record,” he said.

The pace of transactions has picked up because private equity firms have raised record amounts of equity and are looking for ways to deploy it. “They are applying pressure and values are going up,” Bagdasarian said.

Finance reporter Pat Maio can be reached at pmaio@labusinessjournal.com or (323) 556-8329.

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