SAN FRANCISCO, 24 March, 2010 – ThinkEquity LLC, a leading investment banking boutique focused on growth companies and their investors, is pleased to announce the hire of Mr. Deepak Raj as Executive Vice President. Deepak will have reporting to him the firm’s research and institutional equity groups and will be responsible for the firm’s entire institutional markets business.

ThinkEquity Chief Executive, Greg Wright, said: “Research is at the core of what we do: identifying, evaluating and communicating investment opportunities to the market. Deepak Raj's unmatched expertise and judgment will deepen our capabilities in research and extend those capabilities into new growth sectors, starting with our new initiatives in the consumer sector. We could not be more pleased to have him as a colleague.”

Commenting on his appointment, Mr. Raj said: “ThinkEquity is an exciting proposition right now. It is a great brand, has great people, and is in a unique position to help growth companies. I am delighted to join Greg and the team and am looking forward to help build the firm and to establishing an outstanding consumer franchise at ThinkEquity.”

Mr. Raj began his career at Merrill Lynch, where he established one of the leading franchises in consumer products on Wall Street. He was a member of the Institutional Investor’s All Star team for 17 consecutive years often in multiple categories. He was then appointed head of global consumer investment banking before returning to Merrill’s research group as head of US fundamental equity research. His final position at Merrill was SVP of the firm and Director of Global Equity Research.

In 2006, Mr. Raj joined Spring Mountain Capital, which manages about $1.5 billion in assets. He was a member of the firm’s investment committee and also managed an emerging market hedge fund at the firm.