European targets and London/NYC

Hello everyone,

I am interested in hearing from anyone who was able to break into London/NYC IB/PE from european “target” schools.
I’m using “” because I’m aware that no European targets are actually targets in the US.

Thank you all.

Thank you. Just one more question.

Did your friends directly go to London or did they start in regional offices?

I’m asking because I don’t speak Italian/french/german proficiently and would have to recruit directly to London/US.

I have seen both.

It is a tremendous advantage to speak the local language, but it is not always a requirement. Some countries just prefer to converse in their own language, i.e. France and Germany.

If the school is good enough you might be able to break into London, it just isn't the most common route. The economy isn't good at the moment, with all the layoffs and hiring freezes going on. Unlikely, especially if you need a visa for the UK.

Most Helpful

My colleague is from NYC and lives/works in London.
1) He needed management approval/sponsorship to even make the move
2) HR then checks if he meets requirements (length of service, qualifications, head count, ..)
3) HR allows him to join mobility program and briefs him re: time, costs, insurances, salary, bonus, risks, (..)

After visiting the embassy of the target country (if required), the employer sponsored visa is issued if required.

The company will guide him through the moving process.

It is relevant to understand the differences between rotation, relocation, promotion, and secondment programs. The legal framework is different for all of this.

Your HR portal will tell you more.


Not many, but I met two people on WSO and also others IRL who had their internships in the US while studying outside of the US.
Don't forget that folks outside of the US don't get CPT/OPT and, in all likelihood, no chance at H1b. But they can work for any company abroad and then transfer to the US.

There is nothing holding people back from asking companies whether the internship can be on J1/through an agency or in a different country. Most employers give staff a selection of offices.
the other way is to do internships that have an element of travel to the US. This happens often in fashion, beauty, engineering, media, entertainment, content distribution, ..

I have many friends (and me included) who didn't study at 'target shools' and landed jobs in London IB/PE/HF

Could you share more about the paths you took. Which Uni and did you have any internship positions before joining for FT.

I explained my position in a comment above, I’d love to hear what you have to say aswell.

Not going to share Uni, but to answer your other question, yes had multiple internships lined up before my FT gig. Completed 12months of M&A experience (as intern) at MM/BB banks, before starting at a US BB in London. My first 2 internships were in Continental Europe (think Paris/Amsterdam/Milan), which are far easier to get into than directly starting in London. Similar story for a lot of other Continental Europeans i know

I wasn’t trying to dox you or anything like that.

Did you speak the language of the country for the internship in Milan/Paris/Amsterdam?

Also, how did you compete with people from target schools? Afaik, there aren’t many spots in regional offices and I got rejected on all of my applications.

Transfers happen a lot. US employees dream about working in Europe, which opens up spots on US teams. After like 1.5 years and depending on the mood of the group/ your standing, you can bring up with your staffer/boss that you would like to get international experience and inquire about opportunities abroad. I would recommend networking with people from the office you would like to transfer to so they know who you are (have calls with Mds from said office, analysts and associates too).

Thank you.

Right now I’m thinking about dropping out of non-target MSc to attend a target MSc in order to break into IB.

Do you think that’s reasonable? (For reference, I’m in Uni of Luxembourg, complete non-target and almost 0 alumni in IB)

Definitely possible to land London IB, especially if from the top EU targets (HEC, Bocconi, ESADE, IE, St Gallen), also achievable from other good schools (ESSEC, ESCP, EDHEc WHU, Manheim, Politecniconde Milano). However while HEC is on par with LSE/LBS/Oxbridge the others will be below. 

US is harder due to distance and visa 

London is filled with people from European schools such as Bocconi, HEC, ESADE, St. Gallen, CBS etc. Definitely possible, but it is getting harder as most banks want to move people out of London to regional offices.

what about transitioning to the US for a FT position if you do your SA stint in Europe and will study at a U.S. target school?

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