Saturday, May 31, 2014

Competitive Intelligence Macquarie Style: First Establish a Fake Family Office...

From Stock(moo)Journal (Australia):

Macquarie used fake email to get secrets 
A SENIOR executive at Macquarie Group was involved in establishing a fake family office to extract confidential financial information from a competitor.

An investigation by The Australian Financial Review has found that Tim Hornibrook, head of Macquarie Agricultural Funds Management, obtained sensitive details about a competitor's profits, fee structure and returns by posing as a wealthy investor.

Mr Hornibrook sought the information on his competitor at a time when Macquarie was trying to raise $700 million through the investment vehicle Macquarie Crop Partners, sources said.

An email was sent in late 2011 from a Macquarie office in London claiming to be from a private investor called the Brook Family Office.

Using the address, the email said the fictitious company was considering investing in the fund and needed detailed financial, performance and organisation information. The competitor, believing it was a legitimate potential investor, provided a detailed response days after receiving the email.
The email's details show it originated from the computer of a junior marketing employee at Macquarie Funds in London. A Macquarie spokesman said the bank "expects the highest standards of its employees and will be fully investigating this matter".

Mr Hornibrook, a well-known figure in agribusiness investment, did not respond to questions put to him through Macquarie. The revelations are likely to focus attention again on how it conducts business at a time when global investment banks are still under fire for their role in the global financial crisis.

The competitor that unwittingly disclosed the information to Macquarie does not wish to be named and is considering taking legal action....MORE