Auditor gets offer from both Regional botique and PwC CF team, WHICH ONE?

Hi everyone, I am currently going through an important life decision right now.. Having spent about 2.5 years in PwC audit, I am currently able to secure two offers, one from PwC CF team and one from Regional boutique IB. My goal is try to get into PE/VC and I am currently in NZ but quite keen to expand to AU in the future. 

The regional IB has these considerations: (1) IB analyst sounds better ... (2) have a variety of exposure to M&A, debt advisory (probably a bit more emphasis on debt advisory: probably 1/3 in M&A and the rest for debt advisory); (3) straight off the bat lots of involvement in the preparation of IM, pitch books, term sheets etc; (4) They have a small PE in the firm too, which is too small to be in but i guess they do some work for their own PE shop and this will be a good experience as opposed to being the sole financial service provider, I guess this is quite important for moving into pe too? and (5) there is a profit share scheme... 

For PwC, the pros are more around it is M&A heavy, the name is probably bigger in M&A compared to the regional IB, I don't have to take a step down so pay is a little bit better than regional IB. The only concern is probably around the fact that I may have to start with the valuation and financial modeling first and have to slowly move into the M&A advisory later.  

Anyone has experiences or take around this? If I want to move into PE/VC in the future, which one would be considered a better choice?

Anyone who needs advice on moving from audit to IB/CF I am keen to answer too :) 

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Comments (15)

Sep 4, 2021 - 3:57pm

I would say extremely… I have interviewed for at least over 80 times within 2-3 months time and this is the only one I can get. pwC CF would only give me a chance until I got an offer from IB. I think if you are in audit you just have accept that you are the underdog with very slim chances and there is nothing you can do except grinding…

Nov 25, 2021 - 1:13pm

I understand this is your process, but I personally know someone from EY Audit who just landed a BB (GS, MS, BofA, JPM) equity research position after 3 years in audit. Just know your shit before you apply

Array
Sep 5, 2021 - 3:22am

Hey mate, from across the pond (Sydney). IMO it really comes down to the brand name of the boutique and whether they have any history of placing people in PE/VC/BBIB. The PE/VC space in Aus (and I assume NZ) is extremely competitive. You'll find most people getting placed are coming from BB banks. Potentially you'll need to make a jump into a BB before moving into PE/VC. Also, I'm very surprised your pay would be higher at PWC. I did 3.5 years in accounting, and this is my first year in IB and I will be making almost double my old salary (including bonus). I know Big4 CF pays higher than the general accounting streams but I'm pretty sure they pay significantly less than street (with similar hours). As I said before though, I'm very new to this as well, hope all this dribble didn't just confuse you! Good luck. 

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Sep 5, 2021 - 3:33am

Hi man - really appreciate taking your time to write this comment. You are def right re how competitive it is in the Australisia market. This particular boutique is quite well known around the debt advisory space, but M&A def cannot match PwC CF, think I am probably leaning towards PwC right now, as there are a lot more history/data to indicate people jumping into bigger banks (macquarie prodeomiantly). The pay at PwC is higher because I don't need to take a step down, I am moving from Audit senior to CF senior analyst, whereas I have to become an IB Analsyt if I move into IB (excluding bonus as I am still uncertain on how much the profit share from the IB would be). But anyway that is very helpful mate, thanks a lot for your contribution! 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Sep 5, 2021 - 9:16am

Hey mate - do you know what the comp range is for PE or VC after doing ~2yrs of BBIB? I've heard not many bankers recruit for PE in Aus/NZ given lower comp in short term

Sep 5, 2021 - 9:30am

Unfortunately, I have no idea how much comp you can expect, though I would imagine it varies massively fund to fund. I think commenting on average comp for these jobs is a massive grey area regardless due to varying bonuses/carry. Whilst it may be true that a lot bankers don't recruit for PE/VC in Aus compared to the US or UK, I put this down to how much better the work/life balance is in IB in Australia not the compensation. Also, the whole 2 years IB > 2 years PE > MBA > Master of the universe path doesn't really seem to be very popular here from what I can see.

Just my thoughts.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Sep 5, 2021 - 3:45am

Hi Mate, working in Sydney IB currently. To echo the comments above, it is highly dependent on the brand name of the boutique, but unless there is strong historic placement into Aus/NZ IB from the boutique, I think it is a no-brainer to go for PwC.

Being at PwC will allow you to transition to Aus more seamlessly and the M&A reps will be far more valuable than the M&A debt mix (especially considering your intention to move into PE/VC in the future). Not to mention the PwC brand name will definitely get you interviews at top EBs and BBs; it is a very trodden path.

Sep 6, 2021 - 7:42am

Thanks a lot man. Seems like it is def a better choice at the moment in time and I will probably take the pwc despite it may appear that it will take me a bit longer given I need to finish the whole audit project during busy season and will have to start with valuation and modeling, but one good thing about NZ is that it's quite fluid between valuation and M&A advisory so we will see how it goes :)

Sep 6, 2021 - 9:30am

Used to work in the NZ market so hopefully can share some insight. I would 100% go with PwC CF, they are by far the leading MM M&A house in NZ and you will get far better training and exposure to transactions than at the regional IB (which sounds like Bancorp?). The big4 CF teams are pretty highly regarded in Australasia and are strong feeders into the larger IBs and / or smaller PE funds

Sep 6, 2021 - 12:17pm

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