Firm Overview

Businesses Built on Technology

Rice Financial focuses on building successful niche businesses centered around pockets of technical expertise. Rather than trying to do it all, this strategic approach allows our team to deliver the highest level of service in key market segments.  We provide investment banking services to financial institutions, state and local governments, corporations and educational institutions, offering premier execution and creative financial solutions in five areas:

Rice Execution Services

Cost‐efficient equity and options execution.

Municipal Investment Banking

Primary market bond underwriting and secondary market sales of short duration securities to state and local governments.

Corporate Investment Banking

Primary market underwriting of taxable corporate bonds.

Higher Education Finance

Direct lending to public and private colleges and universities in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Education.

Infrastructure Private Equity

Private equity financing of governmental infrastructure under municipal sponsorships.

Our Path to Today

From the beginning, Rice Financial has been a firm with a technical focus. Founder Don Rice, an engineer by training who later received an MBA from Harvard Business School, began his career in investment banking at Merrill Lynch applying derivative concepts for the first time to the municipal markets. In the early 1990s, Don left Merrill to form Rice Financial Products Company as a derivatives boutique, and the new firm quickly became recognized among the most technically innovative companies in municipal finance, executing derivative transactions totaling nearly $30 billion in aggregate notional amount, none of which ever resulted in an unfavorable outcome for the client.
In the wake of the financial crisis, Rice Financial shifted its business model to focus on bond underwriting, bringing many existing swap clients into the business, then successfully launched several additional businesses, each one narrowly focused around the core principle of achieving a comparative advantage based on technical and analytical talent rather than simply firm scale.
Don Rice, Fortune Magazine
Don Rice, Fortune Magazine
This approach to growth has served Rice Financial, and our clients, well. Today, 30 years since our founding, Rice Financial is a participant in more than 10% of all infrastructure bond financings completed in the United States. Our institutional fixed income trading desk averages $20 billion in fixed income sales annually. Our service as a direct lender to colleges and universities has extended to more than 50 schools, with many loans exceeding $100 million. Our institutional equity practice has been a participant in more than $50 billion of IPOs. The firm’s Infrastructure Finance business has already made more than $1 billion available for investment in U.S. infrastructure projects. And our experience underwriting corporate bonds has grown to include bond financings for major clients like American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Diageo USVI and Convergys.