Mugged too often - Need advice on exit opportunities
I understand that this may sound stupid to a lot of you, but life is a continuous evaluation of priorities and I have decided that there's only so much I'm willing to give up for my career.
I'm currently a second year analyst at a PE shop in an Emerging Market ... It's the best job I've ever had and I really enjoy it. I'm also living a very comfortable life financially and have great long term incentives.
The issue is that whilst work is great, life isn't. It's difficult to explain how draining it is to not be able to walk the streets out of fear of being stabbed (have already been mugged a few times) and to be constantly surrounded by extreme poverty and misery. I, and others like me, live a life that is always within the perimeters of four walls or car doors. It gets very, very lonely and the people I occasionally do hang out with are so different from the people I'm used to. Not bad different, but we just don't click. I'm currently about 13 hours away from home (Europe) by airplane.
My firm (small shop) thinks I'm here for the long term which was initially my plan also. I am, however, in a position where I have decided that I need to start thinking about a way to move back to Europe without moving back in the ranks or having to move to BO (nothing wrong with BO, just not for me).
My two options are top MBA or lateral to a European PE firm, maybe with a focus on my emerging market. If I go the MBA route, it will have to be in another year or maybe even two before I matriculate. If I go the lateral route, I'm worried that I'll look like a 'hopper', and additionally that the smaller deal size in my current market and the fact that it's not in Europe might not be valuable over there. On the up side, at my current firm I'm given a lot of responsibility. I'm not sure how it works for analysts in other shops but here I am the only person below the partners and part of the investment team of 3 .. me and the partners. Currently I'm working on 5 live deals, and am the lead on most of them. In addition, we do some consulting work on which I actually conduct the meetings and the projects by myself. I have some media coverage because the partners want to make me well known in the industry so I've become the media go-to guy. (got interviewed about crowd funding the other day, had 5 minutes to learn about crowd funding before the interview, talked a lot of shit but the editor made me sound like an expert, hehe).
My role in the investment process:
1. Network and source deals, screen incoming deals and/or get deals from partners (most frequent).
2. Meet with company to prepare business case presentation, set up the presentation to investment team.
3. Investment team gives go ahead, I give a preliminary DD checklist to the co, and I create the operating model together with the CEO/CFO of the target.
4. I draft a 30 page preliminary DD report, incl. proposed structure, milestones, potential returns etc and create an accompanying pitch deck which I and one partners present and "defend" to the investment committee.
5. Investment committee gives go ahead, partner and I draft term sheet and get it signed, or the partner negotiates and then it's signed.
6. We go ahead with full DD, I manage the entire process and negotiate rates etc with externals (legal, HR, technical). I write concluding DD report and partner and I present findings to investment comm. In the entire DD, I do about 80% of the work, and the partners do 20% which is only whenever I need them to help me.
Like I said, I have no real idea what analysts at other shops do, and my guess is that what I learn here can be transferred to Europe ... but MBA would probably give me a better exit?
Also, will it work against me that I'm an analyst by title without BB IBD experience yet I've got quite a lot of responsibility? I think that in the next year here I will have led and closed around 5-10 deals, plus a lot of consulting/advisory work. Will it work against me that this deal experience is for significant minority investments (%) but for small dollar amounts, and in an emerging market where labour laws and IP laws are very different to European ones?
It's unlikely any of you understand my petty first world problem and you probably think I'm trolling, but it is true that we live once, and we only get one shot at this. I would rather be happy and surrounded by loved ones than wealthy and lonely, and I would rather be close to my family before they die. You have no idea how much I miss public transport :)