Help deciding between SA offers (Top BB vs Top EB) - Have to decide this week!

TombstonesRUs's picture
Rank: Chimp | banana points 15

Using a throwaway: I have five SA 2018 offers in hand, and my deadline to pick is this week. I've narrowed my choice down to two firms. One big BB (think JPM/BAML/Citi) and one top independent advisory EB (think Evercore/Lazard/PJT).

I love both places, and they far outpace the other three firms that made me offers. It's sort of a classic EB vs BB question, but whats your guys thinking on experience, deal flow, exits. People I've talked to are very divided. Essentially little more prestige from the EB firm, but more deal flow from the BB. Early years comp isn't a consideration for me.

Thanks!

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Comments (19)

Sep 16, 2017

You clearly have offers from Citi and Laz. I would take Lazard.

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Sep 17, 2017

haha you're absolutely not right but good guesses :)

Sep 16, 2017

Laz

Sep 16, 2017

i would agree with Laz. congrats on the offers!

Sep 17, 2017

Not sure it's accurate to say that the BB would have more dealflow in terms of classic M&A advisory mandates. You should think about dealflow on a % basis (i.e. adjusting for headcount) as opposed to pure volume.

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Sep 17, 2017

That's definitely a fair point, but working at a BB in M&A, I definitely get to see a wider variety of transactions than anyone at an EB ever could. Sure, an EB analyst might get deeper into every transaction, but in terms of general flow and touching deals, a top BB is unparalleled. I have seen like 3 of the top 10 M&A mandates of the year and I spend literally zero time pitching. That's hard to match at an EB, even EVR/LAZ

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Best Response
Sep 18, 2017

Who cares if you get to "touch" a lot of deals...sure you can make a buyers list for 50 different sell-sides, but at an EB you're actually getting "deeper" into the transaction, which is the important part. Seems like you care more about putting as many deals as you can on your resume instead of learning about the nuances of each deal.

I would choose any of the EBs you listed over all the BBs you listed.

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Sep 19, 2017

.

Sep 16, 2017

What's your GPA, work experience like?

Sep 17, 2017

3.9+ at HYP, MM PE experience, lot of other work experience. Do you think that influences my experience at either firm substantially?

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Sep 16, 2017

Would take any of those 3 EBs over Citi/BAML. It becomes trickier if your BB offer is from JP but would still take EVR/PJT over JP (LAZ vs JP would come down to what group you're in for JP imo)

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Sep 17, 2017

Judging from the groupings, probably BAML / Citi vs EBs. Take the EB and run.

If JPM, I would still say the EB is better.

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Sep 17, 2017

You should think about which groups you're going to be in.

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Sep 19, 2017

An HYP friend recently made a very similar decision boiling down to EB v BB (with BBs on par with if not slightly higher than the ones you listed, think MS/GS/JP). As previously mentioned, with BBs the group matters. Do you know what groups you might be able to get into?

Whereas all 3 of the EBs you mentioned are top-notch (assuming your EB offers are also in M&A). If it's Rx, no-brainer go with the EB...

Sep 17, 2017

It would be a top 3 group at the BB in question - either M&A or one of their two strongest industry coverage groups. Offer is for M&A at the EB. Concerned that the BB has a low return offer rate though, and the EB has a much higher rate

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Sep 17, 2017

So which did you end up taking?

Sep 17, 2017

The BB offer. Really tough call but I think I can stand out there a little more, and I want to start at a bigger firm with more resources and seeing a lot of different types of deals including cap markets stuff.

I am not knowledgeable enough to know I 100% want to do M&A advisory only or that I want to exit into PE. I like the diversity of experience and lateral options the BB provides.

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Sep 17, 2017
TombstonesRUs:

I am not knowledgeable enough to know I 100% want to do M&A advisory only or that I want to exit into PE. I like the diversity of experience and lateral options the BB provides.

If you are not 100% set on PE/more finance after banking, it makes more sense to take the BB offer. Best of luck!

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