Greenhill hires former Pennsylvania Governor

Ed Rendell will serve as a senior advisor to the investment bank, where he’ll ‘focus on expanding Greenhill’s client advisory activities’ in the areas of public-private partnerships and infrastructure projects.

Former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell has joined investment bank Greenhill as a senior advisor, his second infrastructure-related position since he left office less than two weeks ago.

Rendell will “focus on expanding Greenhill’s client advisory activities” in the areas of public-private partnerships, infrastructure projects and other financial matters confronting governments, Greenhill said in a statement.

“Our clients will undoubtedly find his expertise and advice to be invaluable,” Greenhill founder Robert Greenhill said in the statement.

For Rendell, the appointment marks his second infrastructure-related career move since leaving office 18 January. Last week, he re-joined law firm Ballard Spahr as a partner in Philadelphia, where he will focus his practice in part on infrastructure and public-private partnerships. Rendell had been a partner at Ballard prior to his election as governor in 2002.

Rendell built up a reputation on infrastructure issues during his two terms as Pennsylvania Governor. He famously sought to lease the state’s 537-mile turnpike to private investors in 2007: a $12.8 billion deal that fell apart in 2008 but put Rendell in close contact with Rob Collins, Greenhill’s head of Americas infrastructure investment banking. Collins advised Rendell on the deal while still at Morgan Stanley and helped introduce Rendell to Greenhill’s senior management.

Collins said Rendell was drawn to Greenhill’s independence, which enables it to work on deals with government clients such as the US Treasury. In December, the Treasury hired Greenhill as an advisor on how to monetise its equity stake in failed insurance giant AIG, Collins said.

Other investment banks have also been building up senior advisory relationships with former government officials. Last year, Lazard hired Thomas Suozzi to work with infrastructure companies and governments in advising them on financial transactions and public-private partnerships. Until a failed re-election bid in November 2009, Suozzi had served as the executive for Nassau County, a populous county in Long Island that recently had its finances taken over by the state government because it couldn't balance its $2.6 billion budget.

And in 2008, JPMorgan hired former Federal Aviation Administration head Jane Garvey for its infrastructure advisory group. In 2009, she joined infrastructure fund manager Meridiam Infrastructure as the head of its North American operations.