Elite Boutique Investment Banks

I'm looking to get a better and more updated sense of the EB banks...looking for more info on pros/cons of each one, general trends, best groups, and recent PE/HF placements.

Interested in Evercore, Lazard, Centerview, Greenhill, Moelis

*excluding Blackstone because i dont think anyone really knows what will happen post-PJT

Overview of Elite Boutique Investment Banks

So who is the best? The term Elite Boutique encompasses several factors of a banks strengths. Some of the most important factors are pay, exit opportunities, and culture. All of these factors are firm specific. The firms that have the most to offer in these categories are termed Elite Boutiques. You may have good deal flow at Lazard but you would have to sacrifice the culture aspect of the firm (subjective). However, you could choose a more fledgling firm like PJT if you're into the supposed bro-like atmosphere but you might sacrifice deal flow. The nuances of these firms are still being debated. However, when it comes to top-tier firms, the same names are mentioned repeatedly. The following list is no particular order.

Best Boutique Investment Banks List

  • PJT
  • Evercore
  • Moelis
  • Lazard
  • Greenhill
  • Perella Weinberg
  • Houlihan Lokey
  • Piper Jaffray

These seven firms do not represent all elite boutique investment banks. However, we went ahead and ranked these boutiques by average pay, employee satisfaction, and opportunities for career advancement. The following is based on the 2017 Investment Banking Report. Percentiles include all banks in the industry report.

Top Boutique Investment Banks by Average Pay

These figures represent average base plus average bonus for 1st year analysts through November 2017 (see green button below to access updated IB salary and bonus figures).

  1. P.J.T: 166k
  2. Moelis: 154.7k
  3. Evercore: 139.8k
  4. Perella Weinberg: 128.8k
  5. Houlihan Lokey: 127.8k
  6. Lazard: 124.4k
  7. Piper Jaffray: 120.9k

Boutique Investment Banks Ranked by Employee Satisfaction

  • 90th to 98th Percentile: Lazard, Houlihan Lokey, Evercore
  • 70th to 90th Percentile: Moelis, PJT
  • 50th to 70th Percentile: Greenhill, Perilla Weinberg, Piper Jaffray

Top Tier Boutiques for Career Advancement

  • 90th to 98th Percentile: Houlihan Lokey, Evercore, Lazard,
  • 70th to 90th Percentile: Moelis,PJT
  • 50th to 70th Percentile: Piper Jaffary, Perala Weinberg

If you would like to know more information about these firms then take a look at the IB Industry report. This report is constantly updated and contains compensation by position, company statistics, lifestyle rankings, and more! Click the button below to access the report.

IB Industry Report

Comments (140)

Mar 23, 2015 - 5:45pm
HedgeWhore, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Evercore --> TPG recent placement all I know

The way Ah see it, is that it took a revolution f a bihllion people for your darn short to work out!
  • 1
Mar 23, 2015 - 11:16pm
bbgalr, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Actually not really...there are no posts within the past 2 years that talk about Lazard and how they're doing. So it'd be great if I could get more recent info

Mar 23, 2015 - 10:42pm
RoleTied, what's your opinion? Comment below:

From looking around at the fund pages and linkedin it seems that EVR, GHL, and Moelis continue doing their thing in sending kids to top funds (I've seen Carlyle, KKR, Apollo, MDP, Golden Gate, Warburg, H&F, etc.).

I think even Centerview is putting (or allowing) kids into a couple MFs.

I just don't see that many Lazard analysts especially considering that the firm probably has as more than twice as many analysts as any of the other EBs. Am I just talking out of my ass here? In undergrad I remember people were saying that Lazard placed as well as GS and MS. Is it because the firm's hardcore sweatshop culture is turning away people with other options?

Mar 24, 2015 - 12:45am
DaBBzMan, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Centerview, Moelis, Evercore, Guggenheim, Lazard, Greenhill, and Perella would be the Elite Boutiques if I were to list them. I would never rank them, just categorize them differently

Bankety Bank Banks (Places you go to bank and die): Centerview and Perella

PE Stepping Stones: Evercore and Moelis

OddBalls: Lazard, Greenhill, and Gugg

Lazard is a long-time powerhouse and is still on huge deals, but on a % basis its analyst classes don't place like EVR or MoCo, still a quality bank though

Greenhill... Out of left field. Still on the league tables and doing well despite losing a shit ton of people, not sure what is going on there or how that will affect how they recruit/place

Gugg.. Up and comer. TBD on if it will become a Centerview or a Moelis in terms of recruiting bankers and trying to keep people in the firm or encouraging recruiting and turn out almost full analyst classes to the buyside year-in-year-out.

Mar 24, 2015 - 1:21am
RoleTied, what's your opinion? Comment below:


League tables are interesting right now. Lazard is doing its usual thing of being the top EB because they aren't a boutique and have tons more staff and relationship guys than the average boutique.

Centerview is doing it's thing being on megadeals and cleaning up. Blair Effron has some sort of all-star team going on over at CV.

Greenhill looks revived essp. in the US. Dunno if they've been losing a "ton" of people but there has been some hemorrhaging for sure. I think these things are cyclical though or they're just losing people they don't want to keep.

MoCo makes an appearance around where GHL is, both US and globally. They seem to do a lot of smaller, sponsors related deals as opposed to Evercore/GHL/LAZ/CV which seems more focused on strategic deals.

Rothschild is doing very well in Europe but not so much in the US.

BX makes a rare appearance. One quick note is Taubman's fire all in telecoms? Cause that's all I see PJT doing.

Evercore is missing. Probably will make an appearance by year's end though. Just haven't announced any huge mandates yet. They also lost their consumers team so that must hurt.

PWP is missing. Probably will also make an appearance by year's end. Not M&A related but losing your restructuring heads to defection is not helping their rep.

Guggs had that huge healthcare deal earlier in the year. Def strong in that space, we'll see how they progress.

Mar 24, 2015 - 1:41am
RoleTied, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Also if I was choosing which shops to join as analyst I'm thinking about this (not going to include BX/PJT but it probably is included in all these catagories except dealflow):

Culture Shops (hours, respect that seniors have for you/your time, facetime, etc.): Evercore, Greenhill, Centerview, PWP I frankly think it's all pretty similar at these places. Evercore and GHL have reps about having the "best" culture but I can't imagine CV and PWP are that different. MoCo: Sweatshop, long hours are all true. But I heard Ken Moelis actually takes like an interest in the analysts so that's pretty cool. LAZ: lol

Placement to buyside(I know people at all of these shops except CV, PWP, and Laz): Evercore, MoCo: Places as well as they always have on an absolute basis but the % has dropped off as they ballooned they analyst classes a bit in the last few years. Still great MF placement (I'm guessing MoCo might have an edge though because they amount of work they do with sponsors). Have heard of KKR, TPG, Apollo, Carlyle, BX, etc.
GHL: Analyst class size hasn't changed much. Still places into MF and top MM PE (Apollo, Carlyle, MDP, H&F, Golden Gate, Providence, TPG, GS PIA, etc.). I think I saw that Vettery report that says GHL put 93% of their analysts into the buyside last year. CV/PWP: Rep is that they aren't going to support buyside stuff but it's still possible. CV placed into Carlyle and KKR I think. Lazard: No fricken clue.

Dealflow: Pretty much all these places are decent.The only is that I don't think MoCo does a lot of megadeals compared to rest if you're into that

Honestly, I can't think of any other major criteria that I would use to evaluate banks as an analyst. No idea about Gug for any of these.

Mar 24, 2015 - 2:01pm
bbgalr, what's your opinion? Comment below:

This is definitely helpful to know!

I think from a target campus perspective, this is the general order of which banks are more desirable for students going through the recruiting process. Some of my comments may be wrong but this is what I've noticed firsthand. Take this with a grain of salt as most college kids have no real experience with any of these banks (myself included)

First and foremost, the absolute top kids at targets go straight into megafund PE or top HF...usually your typical 3.9+ with strong work experience. The next tier of kids go to banking/MBB and this is the general preferences:

  1. Blackstone - for obvious reasons
  2. Evercore - I've seen a lot of the top kids who end up here...firm also had a ridiculous offer acceptance rate (think 15/16 of offered interns are returning), they're definitely doing something right
  3. Lazard/Centerview - CV largely for the compensation, LAZ for its reputation on the street...the kids that go to these two are usually top-talent kids [BIG gap]
  4. Perella - very small presence on campus...most people ("I don't know if I want to do banking") don't know about them and the top kids usually end up going elsewhere. similar to Centerview without the compensation incentive
  5. Greenhill/Moelis - These two are definitely lower on the list. Haven't really seen too many kids going to Greenhill now that I think about it, but kids think highly of the culture there. Moelis definitely takes more for summer interns, but return rate isn't great
  6. Guggenheim - no comments

4 and 5 could even be grouped together, but PWP takes so few kids that it's hard to tell

Mar 24, 2015 - 2:12pm
RoleTied, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I'm surprised that GHL and MoCo are so low and that there's a "big gap". Especially when they place into the buyside as well as Evercore and Lazard. I think BX/EVR/GHL were in top demand beause of their culture and buyside placement. MoCo/Laz are usually lumped together as having great buyside placement but shitty lifestyles.

CV/PWP were wildcards because of their non-buyside policy (have heard that's changing a tiny bit at both shops).

I think PWP and GHL had the least presence on campus. They're small firms with tiny analyst classes compared to the rest and only took like 1 from my target school.

Mar 24, 2015 - 2:21pm
theallansmith, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Having gone through the whole PE rigamarole (from what people would consider an elite boutique). I have seen that Moelis and Blackstone do best. Evercore/Greenhill/Lazard are next. All other boutiques are usually not considered elite and tend to have a tougher time getting looks. That being said, Centerview makes bank (and bankers).

Best Response
Mar 25, 2015 - 4:18am
smokeyg, what's your opinion? Comment below:

The amount of complete shit in this thread is shocking. As someone that just went through PE recruitment and accepted a PE job, I'll add a word. I'm at GS/MS/JPM so this is all from talking with peers during recruitment - I don't have first hand experience at an EB.

BX obviously does very well.

Evercore obviously does very well.

Moelis LA smashes it. Moelis NY less so, but they still do well and have a couple MF placements each year (usually a girl or a rock star analyst that MDs call their friends for).

GHL does extremely well. Especially at the top prestigious MM funds. Less MF placement, but it certainly exists and due to their small analyst class sizes, you're actually probably better off here on a percentage basis.

Lazard I will agree is tricky. Super prestigious bank that attracts a lot of top tier talent. They have one off placements that are really good, but it's not half the feeder the Moelis LA or Evercore are for some reason. They all still can land interviews with ease though and that's what matters.

PWP is not great for buyside recruitment. I've said in previous threads that a couple of my buddies really struggled through the recruitment there and they're actually now taking a third year to improve their chances.

I do not know enough about CV to post with certainty, so I won't post anything about it. Isn't that a novel concept, refraining from speaking when you don't know what you're talking about. Huh.

Mar 25, 2015 - 9:49am
leaguerboard, what's your opinion? Comment below:

CVP doesn't have the extensive history of other EBs so it's hard to observe trends. However, lots of folks stick within CVP and seem to want to go for their analyst -> associate track. This makes it a little more difficult to distinguish exactly what the placement is like because a lot of their competent folks don't actively hunt for the MF / HF roles .People are pushed towards a 3 year analyst program and the culture there is very much focused on staying for the long-term; seniors will traditionally frown up analysts who imply that they want to leave. That being said, they've still placed people at KKR, H&F and other MFs. Another thing about the 3 year program is that not everyone recruits for PE in their first year and some opt to wait for the second year. Also, people at CVP seem very, very sharp - lots of smart people in that firm.

Moelis LA =/= Moelis NY for sure

Mar 25, 2015 - 2:57pm
DaBBzMan, what's your opinion? Comment below:

LA is just a different animal since the "street" in LA is so small. Its really just Moelis and HL RX. Maybe a solid BB coverage group is out there but thats basically it. So there is less competition which means MoCo kids there do better in recruiting. IMO there is no real competition for them outside san fran and NY bankers looking to jump coasts. I think I saw CV opened an LA office?

Mar 25, 2015 - 3:15pm
Kobayashi, what's your opinion? Comment below:

LAZ analyst class each year has ~46 members (let's be honest they aren't bankers, they are trying out to be bankers). I don't where all this misinformation comes from.

As for Los Angeles qn above the following teams are in Los Angeles: Moelis, MS, Laz (share a building), Greenhill (small), CS, Citi, BaML, GS, JPM, CV, HLHZ. All of them recruit fine.

Mar 25, 2015 - 8:42pm
DaBBzMan, what's your opinion? Comment below:

LAZ analyst class each year has ~46 members (let's be honest they aren't bankers, they are trying out to be bankers). I don't where all this misinformation comes from.

As for Los Angeles qn above the following teams are in Los Angeles: Moelis, MS, Laz (share a building), Greenhill (small), CS, Citi, BaML, GS, JPM, CV, HLHZ. All of them recruit fine.

Googling and seeing they "have offices" does not put them on parity with Moelis LA or Houlihan LA. Please direct me to the placements out of Laz, CV, and Greenhill LA. The others are still BBs so yes you can recruit out of them, but are they going to top Moelis? No. LA is a satellite market for everyone you listed OUTSIDE Moelis and Houlihan

Mar 27, 2015 - 1:10pm
rionexpa, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I work in one of the above offices (not Moelis or Houlihan and not BB). We have 18 bankers consisting of 3 MDs, 2 Directors, 3 VPs, 3 Associates, and 5 Analysts. We cover gaming and aerospace which makes sitting in Los Angeles very advantageous logistically (LV and Wichita are frequent for site visits). We pitch against Moelis and HLHZ quite often and have pretty high success rates in the sectors we cover, including long-term engagements that also allow for good buyside experience. Not trying to make comparisons but I think your perspective is a little off-base. Recent placement and offers from Ares, Apollo LA, BlueMountain, Sun Capital, HIG, etc. Interviews at every top firm.

FWIW, placement depends on your ability to perform in an interview, not where you work (with some minimum threshold kept in mind). The firms listed above all pass muster and if you can speak to your experiences and demonstrate an understanding of the technicals you'll get a good job.

Mar 27, 2015 - 2:03pm
RX, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Lazard's current first year analyst class consists of appr. 50 analysts across the NY, SF, LA, Chicago, Houston and LA offices. I can't speak for all groups, but can say the Rx and HC analysts consistently place very well. Not all analysts have their eyes set on traditional megafunds, which is partly due to some of the more complex types of modeling and analyses analysts regularly come across at Lazard. For instance, the entire class of first year Rx analysts has already lined up solid buyside jobs, but they are all going to highly regarded distressed debt type shops. I have heard that the M&T guys who sit in NY's TMT group also do really pretty well with recruiting.

When it comes to competing against "feeder" banks like MoCo (especially in LA), I can say from experience it is very possible. Sure some other candidates may be inherently "teed up" better to shops than others due to relationships and track records of taking analysts from certain banks, but that doesn't mean you are out of the running.

Lazard's rank and reputation varies a bit from industry to industry. For instance, it's HC group is a top-notch practice that has had a phenomenal track record the past three years. That being said, it's one of the toughest groups to work for in terms of hours and finding time to balance work with outside life and recruiting efforts.

Happy to discuss more of this via PM.

Mar 27, 2015 - 3:13pm
rionexpa, what's your opinion? Comment below:

This is an accurate post. Keep in mind many first years flame out and opt to avoid PE recruiting altogether. I recall a member of my analyst class was obsessed with landing a job at Apollo during training until 7 months in dropped out to work at a well-known tech firm. This is/was very common.

FWIW megafund work can be very very similar to IB at 2x the pay rate (the compelling part of the offer). After 9 months into your first year the realization that you'll still be working 80-90 hours a week / weekends essentially turning internal memos / decks well into your mid-late 20s can push you in a different direction very quickly.

Mar 27, 2015 - 5:50pm
midnight_oil, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Can someone talk about the pay at these shops? For instance, Lazard ($6.9b market cap / $2.3bn revenue) , Evercore ($1.9bn market cap / $900m revenue), Moelis ($600m market cap / $500m revenue) and Greenhill ($1.1bn market cap / $275m revenue) are all public companies. Perella and Centerview are still private, Centerview in particular paying extremely well and doing great stuff in biotech (the Qatalyst of healthcare?). Obviously the public guys, while still somewhat small (except for Lazard), pay quite a bit on stock.

Would be interesting to compare rev / employee as well I guess.

Mar 27, 2015 - 7:06pm
rionexpa, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Nobody at the analyst / junior associate level is getting paid in stock. Comp changes quite a bit once the firm goes public given investors want to see comp ratios, SG&A margins, etc. LAZ has generally underpaid Moelis but I'm not sure how Moelis comp will change with the IPO. My guess is it comes down over time, how quickly I don't know.

Mar 28, 2015 - 9:46am
above_and_beyond, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Nobody at the analyst / junior associate level is getting paid in stock. Comp changes quite a bit once the firm goes public given investors want to see comp ratios, SG&A margins, etc. LAZ has generally underpaid Moelis but I'm not sure how Moelis comp will change with the IPO. My guess is it comes down over time, how quickly I don't know.

I'm at one of the public firms whose name is thrown around in this topic and I can confirm that we receive RSUs on top of the regular comp.

Mar 27, 2015 - 5:54pm
midnight_oil, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Per rionex's comment, as a senior analyst or first year associate you've usually built up some goodwill at your firm. you may even get an analyst under you and should get first dibs on interesting projects. Many 2nd/3rd years who to PE have to go through realization that they're (again) the most junior kids at the new firm. Granted they throw some work to banks, but not all of it. Internal memos, comps, basic dumb research are all expected with little help. Plus for every target your PE firm is thinking about buying, they kick the tires on 5-10 others, and they kick pretty deep. % deal completion is similar to banking. Work is more meaningful though.

Mar 31, 2015 - 1:46pm
bbgalr, what's your opinion? Comment below:

This is secondhand info but apparently Lazard placement was very strong last year. For what it's worth, placements had multiple people going to megafunds including (but not limited to) Apollo, KKR, TPG and CD&R. It was a lot better than the past few years where they had limited MF placements.

I have no idea as to why they weren't doing so well before, or why they did well last year.

Mar 31, 2015 - 4:33pm
rionexpa, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Here is what I am saying:

Year 1 Banking: $130 - 140k Year 2 Banking: $150k - 160k

Contract expires June 30...move to MF as...

1st Year Associate: $250 - $300k

So upper bound of next year over lower bound of current year is 2x. What leads you to believe this is made up? Ares, Oaktree, etc. are paying their first year associates $250 - $300k...

May 26, 2015 - 11:14am
nutsaboutWS, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Elite Boutique Rankings 2010 (Originally Posted: 10/21/2010)

Rank these firms, or split them into tiers

BX, Lazard, Centerview, Moelis, Qatalyst, Greenhill, Evercore, Perella Weinberg

and anymore you'd like to add

-- "Those who say don't know, and those who know don't say."
Mar 31, 2015 - 7:17pm
rionexpa, what's your opinion? Comment below:

My original statement was: "FWIW megafund work can be very very similar to IB at 2x the pay rate (the compelling part of the offer). After 9 months into your first year the realization that you'll still be working 80-90 hours a week / weekends...." Given the above math in the context of this statement the point is that despite making up to 2x as much (using the math provided and assuming MF - which again was assumed in the original statement) you will still be working similar hours and doing similar work. How is this made up? Like I said before, this isn't some controversial statement.

Apr 13, 2015 - 7:46pm
midnight_oil, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Yeah Rionex is right but maybe a more fair way would be to compare with a 3rd year analyst pay raise in mind.

and then to add to that A-to-As partially catch up. It just takes them an extra year. For people who don't like to wait MF is a great option to get more money asap.

From a quality of work / life balance perspective though, I would honestly say that senior analysts / junior associates at BBs (and definitely EBs and MMs) actually have a better lifestyle since they're more experienced and efficient and are more tenured in the organization vs. 1) obviously more junior analysts who're there to crank (remember - if you go to a MF you're like an analyst again), 2) MBA associates who crank because they don't know what they're doing.

Analysts who stay to become associates are like the "darlings" of banks and always get prioritized over new people. In a career where loyalty is hard to come by, it is actually handsomely rewarded with better projects and work-life balance.

May 26, 2015 - 11:35am
zebro1124, what's your opinion? Comment below:

For those at elite boutiques (Originally Posted: 01/13/2015)

I'm specifically interested in how guys at the EBs sort through resumes since I've heard it's more GPA-oriented. When you guys look through resumes, what's the first thing you look at? GPA? Work experience?

Does not having GPA on it automatically mean BB IBD)? I've always thought they don't even look at under 3.7.

May 26, 2015 - 11:44am
Creamofthecrop, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Landing a FT offer from a Elite Boutique (Originally Posted: 04/14/2014)

I am graduating in December, and have spent the last 3 summers interning in business related fields. I am graduating a semester late due to an injury that ended my college athletic career. I have worked in accounting, supply management, and will be doing an internship with Wells Fargo WBR this summer. I have networked fairly well, having a few analyst contacts at some boutiques and a very good one whom is senior management for fixed income at UBS. I feel as though it will be too difficult coming from a non-Target school despite a good GPA to aim straight for a bulge, due to not having a specific IB internship. Moreover, I hope to enter into VC as an exit after my stay. From what I have read I believe my ability to have more responsibility at a boutique will procure myself better opportunities.

My questions: 1) Is this a good strategy? Or do you think I should still have a shot at bulge? 2) Anyone have experience getting interviews with elite boutiques? I have read recruitment can occur sporadically. 3) Where should I target specifically? 4) Any other advice, criticism, experience you can offer?

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May 26, 2015 - 12:05pm
Christmas Poo, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Boutique Bank Reps (Originally Posted: 11/08/2015)

Current junior at a target doing SA recruiting and primarily interested in boutique firms. In the process for a few banks now and would love to get some info about the analyst experience and general reputations of the following:

NY offices - Greenhill Moelis Lazard Centerview Perella PJT Evercore

Aside from the above, what other firms in NYC are generally considered to be top M&A independent advisory shops?


May 26, 2015 - 12:06pm
qwertyzxc, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Some people consider Guggenheim, Houlihan, Peter J. Solomon Co., & Rothschild to be elite boutiques as well

Know a kid that turned town a top BB group offer to join PJSC and met a lot of top Wharton UGs that seem to love Houlihan for some reason or another. At my school (NYU), Evercore is touted as the place to be

The ones you listed above and maybe these three are pretty much all the banks I would consider to be EB

May 26, 2015 - 12:07pm
RoleTied, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Evercore, Greenhill, and PJT I think are the best places to be. They have generally good lifestyles and culture, great dealflow for their respective sizes, and consistent/great buyside placement.

Moelis/Lazard will give you dealflow and exits but the culture/lifestyle there at the analyst level is not optimal by any stretch. Moelis is basically the only EB that deals with sponsors on a consistent basis so that has its plusses and minuses.

CVP/Perella are typically regarded as banking for life places that really want to retain analyst talent. I think people from CVP do place well if they decide to go to the buyside but it's not really encouraged and there's a hardline three year program. Perella doesn't really place as well as any of the other EBs but they do alright.

Other shops like PJ Solomon, HLHZ (essp. RX), Rothschild, and now Guggenhiem is up and coming with a growing HC and Telecom practice that kicks ass (this doesn't really have too much impact on analyst important things like placement though).

May 26, 2015 - 12:08pm
powwow, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Boutique Rankings (Originally Posted: 04/24/2008)

I know this is highly subjective, but I wanted to know what are the ranks for the following boutiques (for U.S. M&A/Restructuring only; excluding their buyside divisions):

Lazard Blackstone Evercore Rothschild Greenhill

Appreciate your input.

May 26, 2015 - 12:11pm
aworldapart, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Top Boutiques? (Originally Posted: 04/17/2008)

Where do the top boutiques recruit? I am not talking about Lazard because they do have a fairly broad recruiting base. However, for shops like Evercore, Gleacher, Greenhill, and MoCo, do they only recruit at top Ivies (namely, Harvard and Wharton)? I pose this question because I have a brother at a non-ivy target who would eventually like to do a SA stint at one of these top boutiques, but not all of the boutiques recruit there. For example, I don't think MoCo/Evercore recruit at Northwestern, Duke, or UChicago.

How tough is it for a non-ivy target to get offers from a top boutique, considering how small their recruiting grounds are?

Thanks everyone.

May 26, 2015 - 12:14pm
banking321, what's your opinion? Comment below:

How's centerview compare to those?

May 26, 2015 - 12:15pm
paulsonator333, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I've heard that MoCo and Perella only recruit at Harvard and Wharton at the associate level, but PW also apparently recruits at Georgetown at the undergrad level and Moco also recruits at UCLA at the undergrad level.

May 26, 2015 - 12:20pm
smuguy97, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Centerview is very new, but they've already done some very large deals. Much of the rep for a boutique can come from nothing more than its well known founding partners, and Centerview has no shortage of these (e.g., Effron, Crawford, etc.). Instant credibility means instant deal flow.

As another example, many people on this forum appear to have wet dreams about working for Moelis & Company, which was only started in July '07.

May 26, 2015 - 12:23pm
waltersobchek, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Just curious - how big are Greenhills and Evercore's SA class? I know Laz's is 25, and since the latter are quite a bit smaller, I was thinking under 10-15.

May 26, 2015 - 12:24pm
joefish, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Hmm, Evercore intern class must be tiny, e.g. in London they only have about 20 people ( I think ) so no more than 2 interns.

Greenhill did not take more than 5 for the London office, not sure about NY.

10-15 seems a bit high.

May 26, 2015 - 12:25pm
Warhawk_1, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Moelis Summer Associates recruit from your usual suspects for MBA's:

Harvard, Wharton, Stern, Kellog, etc.

Undergraduate, the schools i've seen in the intern class are:

6 from Wharton, 2 from Umich, 1 UCLA, 1 Boston College(in the Boston office), and 2 others i can't remember. My UCLA And BC numbers are probably off bc i dont remember right now.

Undergraduate recruiting is pretty much decided by alumni i think(hence the 6 from Wharton a.k.a. the Moelis effect)

May 26, 2015 - 12:28pm
wharton2wallstreet4life, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Perella Weinberg said at their information session that they recruit "on-campus" exclusively at Harvard Business School for their associates and at Harvard, Wharton, and Georgetown "on-campus" at the undergrad level. Sounds like an amazing place, but I remember them saying they were only taking two summer analysts from Penn, so I can't imagine their full-time classes are much larger than 5 or so. Granted, PWP and MoCo are both brand new (relatively speaking) so I'm not sure if either of them have actually had an official FT analyst class that wasn't laterals yet.

May 26, 2015 - 12:29pm
aworldapart, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Let's expand this a bit.

What if you want to apply to a specific group or division of a BB? How would you secure an offer/interview for Goldman PIA, Goldman SSG, Morgan Stanley REPE, etc? Are inside connections the only way to go?

Thanks again everyone

May 26, 2015 - 12:32pm
DamageControl, what's your opinion? Comment below:

How to rank boutiques (Originally Posted: 12/05/2012)

So I've been harassing the local boutiques in my city for employment opportunities and I've gotten a few bites. Now I'm wondering how to figure out which are the better ones. It's easy to do with BBs...but what about boutiques?

What I've been doing is straight up asking them during our call and sifting through the bs for the answers they give. So far I've been asking, -number of employees -number of interns, how often they cycle through, and where they end up if they don't receive full time offers -what sectors they focus on -how long the MD's have been in the business -what is the sweet spot for size of deals -how many deals are they working on now -and of course, how much modeling the analysts do, and how much do the MD's/Partners bank on the technicals during the deal

Some of this stuff you can find on their website (like experience of senior mgmt), but a lot of it you can't gauge very well.

What I'm asking, is whether there is a way to rank the 50-100 banks in my city without having to call all of them. What other methods have people used to rank boutiques that aren't as well known?

May 26, 2015 - 12:34pm
oreos, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Post their names on WSO and let the shit storm ensue. Time and tested method.

"After you work on Wall Street it’s a choice, would you rather work at McDonalds or on the sell-side? I would choose McDonalds over the sell-side.” - David Tepper
May 26, 2015 - 12:35pm
b.mahoney, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Don't necessarily look at number of employees or quantity of deals. There are a number of small boutiques that popped up after the massive downsizing in the industry over the past 5 years. Ones to be careful of are boutiques that are a legacy group of MDs who came from a bulge that are now just sitting on their hands and listing "transactions at previous firms" on the websites. There are still good boutiques that are very small but have a viable business if they participate in 3 reasonably sized transactions a year.

What I'd look at is the deals they do (weighing quantity vs quality) and the backgrounds of their current employees. Boutiques are really a case by case basis and there are some gems that don't have enough presence for there to be an accurate consensus view by outsiders.

May 26, 2015 - 12:37pm
OMS, what's your opinion? Comment below:

i would look at their recent transaction and see how many deals they closed in 2011 and 2012. I would also look at the bios of the senior bankers to see the quality of their experience. Look for BB, top MM, or top "elite boutique" backgrounds or some wort of combination of industry work (corp/biz dev), PE, and banker work. It is a good indicator of what your experience will be like. Lastly, look at where they went to school.

Stay clear of boutiques that were started buy non-bankers (like industry c-levels, big 4 accountants, consultants, valuation advisors, etc). They sometimes don't know what they are doing running an investment bank and you will find yourself cold calling companies just to bring in business (this is like a notch below writing a pitchbook on a bitch work scale). You want to make sure they have built a strong network at a top IB so that they have the appropriate connections themselves to come up with potential clients to pitch to.

May 26, 2015 - 12:38pm
SonnyZH, what's your opinion? Comment below:


[quote]The HBS guys have MAD SWAGGER. They frequently wear their class jackets to boston bars, strutting and acting like they own the joint. They just ooze success, confidence, swagger, basically attributes of alpha males.[/quote]
May 26, 2015 - 12:40pm
b.mahoney, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Sorry, I may have conveyed my message poorly. I was not saying that ex-BB bankers who have started boutiques should be avoided. My point was that the BB background alone isn't necessarily indicative of the boutique's strength. Some bankers have had more success than others with retaining clients after they leave the bulge platform.

And when I'm talking about boutiques, I'm thinking of those that are much smaller than the "elite" shops.

May 26, 2015 - 12:41pm
TechBanking, what's your opinion? Comment below:

A way that I would look at it is that each deal team (3-4 people) needs to be closing at least 2-3 good deals per year for a small boutique to be successful. So you are looking for ~1 deal closed per banker, assuming that the firm is not overly top or bottom heavy, which could skew things. Obviously this ratio would skew down in bad years, like 2009, or up in good years, like 2012 has been for many boutiques.

  • 1
May 26, 2015 - 12:42pm
milehigh, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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May 26, 2015 - 12:45pm
ChimpOnMyShoulder, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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May 26, 2015 - 12:46pm
cayo275, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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