With SG having severely retrenched its equity research effort a few weeks ago, it only seemed a matter of time before one of its top talents was headhunted from the remaining rump.

That has now happened. SG has lost Philip Mok, its head of Hong Kong research, to Deutsche Bank where he will have an expanded remit to look after Greater China.

Mok will join Ed Peter's flourishing new team at Deutsche. Since his arrival last year, the colourful Swiss has added around 70 new hires and built a boutique atmosphere within the German colossus (see this month's FinanceAsia pg20 for a profile of Peter, and a photograph of his famous cow). He has focused on hiring some of the best salespeople in Asia and some of its most opinionated analysts such as David Scott.

Mok will join a team that is also starting to see some successes on the primary markets side through issues for DBS Bank and Sembcorp. He will report to Brian Nolan, the head of research.

Meanwhile, following FinanceAsia's Q&A with SG's global co-head of investment banking, Stephen Brisby, the firm's Asian boss has also put out a memo reaffirming SG's commitment to Asia.

In the memo, Christian Gomez wrote: "I would like to comment on the recent transformations in our organization... At the highest level of SG, the decision has been made to be present in Asia... I wish to reiterate that SG's independence of views is well appreciated by institutional clients and we enjoy already better rankings in our sectors in Asia than anywhere else around the globe."