HIG Capital Reputation?

Hi everyone - I know HIG has a bit of a scummy reputation but it seems like they've cleaned up their act in recent years. Anyone have thoughts on them going forward? Would a couple of years there be viewed as a black mark on your resume?

Comments (61)

  • Analyst 1 in AM - FI
Apr 18, 2020 - 7:30pm

I think juniors aren't get too negatively impacted by the stigma (have worked with a few of them), but they've all said it's frustrating to do lots of work to put in the low priced bids when the chances of any one deal going through are very small.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Apr 19, 2020 - 11:22am

"Would a couple of years there be viewed as a black mark on your resume?"
As in, recruiting for other PE roles (second associate stint post-MBA) will be harder?

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Apr 21, 2020 - 11:08pm

Absolutely not. As others have commented, HIG is a very solid UMM shop that has a negative reputation for being a sweatshop and bidding very low for assets. You likely still need to be at a BB or EB to get an offer.

  • VP in PE - LBOs
Apr 21, 2020 - 8:14pm

No denying HIG is a successful firm, but they have such a widespread reputation for low balling bids, retrading post-LOI, grinding their junior folks that I'm worried there's a stigma of sorts if you ever try to lateral somewhere else. I'm sure it's not a big deal at the associate level, but post-MBA I feel like people begin to associate you with your firm's brand and it may make movement more difficult than it otherwise would be.

I have no first hand experience in this at all, but it seems like I've heard jokes about HIG at all levels of my career.

  • VP in CB
Aug 25, 2020 - 10:30pm

@Shaino can you comment on how much carry you get as an associate and VP?

Most Helpful
Aug 5, 2020 - 8:05pm

Have been in high finance for 15 years and know plenty of people older/peers/younger than I that have gone through HIG. Can attest Shaino anyone who can make it through HIG is a G. They have IMO a great carry program, even at the entry associate level, which some of my peers are still clipping coups off of 10+ years out. Frankly I wish my PE program offered the same. Returns are top decile. You know who else are bottom-feeders? Apollo, Platinum, CD&R. If you don't know the the basic LBO math between entry and exit mult than you don't belong in PE to begin with. The better question to ask is how are they able to get these awesome entry mults in a mature and saturated industry that is PE....

Aug 7, 2020 - 5:11am

Lmao at bottom feeder label dude. I work at one of the funds mentioned here at that connotation is almost exclusively used by senior bankers (in my exp) who will often falter on targeted or even broadly-marketed sell-side processes and get pissed when their shitty client doesn't demand an 8x+ ebitda multiple for a company / industry going to shit. When I was a first year it always puzzled me that bankers were confused as to why a shitty company or asset wasn't fetching a higher value with sponsors , especially value-oriented guys like Apo or Plat. But alas the sellside fees and incentives will always drive senior bankers to the point of irrationality until they discuss a deal that isn't theirs... then they have plenty of opinions as to why their MD colleague isn't able to fetch or eek out real value from his deal

  • 3
Aug 11, 2020 - 3:39am

These guys should do themselves a favor and get off Gobuyside and instead go fully internal or use a respectable head hunter.

I have no doubt it's a great firm, but there is something off-putting about getting 15 emails from Gobuyside in a year for HIG roles.

Edit: went back and did a filter in my email. Have 30 emails from them over the last 3-4 years for HIG opportunities (across different funds / strategies / locations). So not 15 a year but still a very large number.

Aug 20, 2020 - 1:08am

I just joined HIG as an Associate and think their recruiting process is quite on point. Found the process quite meritocratic given the steps are fair for all - Round 1 Interview, Round 2 Modeling Test, etc. Unlike some other firms which will only interview candidates from three groups at three firms or have some candidates skip ahead of the process based on superficial data. I'm biased joining out of a non-NYC office and lesser known boutique bank. Yes, on HIG having used GoBuyside for a while and handling internally - I was fine with that given the point above on consistency (I did well on the GAT Test which I think got me a look). I know GoBuyside has a search practice that HIG will use for more senior level hires as well as needed given its much more expensive. On the broader points about culture, bottom-feeding and all that - your investing your time to learn a skill-set. HIG puts up the returns so I dont understand why anyone wouldnt want to see hows it is done earlier in their career. From there, you can always pivot to targeting a better lifestyle or whatever. I do think there is value in seeing how you can "grind or sweatshop" out an extra 2 to 3 points on your IRR. Something you may not get at a firm that is less transactional and more focused on leveraging Partner's networks to generate great deal flow - not sure how much value you accrue as an Associate here as you dont personally benefit anything skill wise.

  • Analyst 2 in Consulting
Aug 21, 2020 - 5:52pm

Dude your life is short and your 20s are shorter. It's sad hearing you try to justify knowingly being miserable for 2-3 years. Lot of things in life more important than a couple extra points of IRR.

Aug 23, 2020 - 10:18pm

Life is short seems like a pretty weak argument for not spending a couple years with your head down working hard.  Assuming you're in the US average life expectancy is ~78 years, so we'll pretend the tutorial years don't count and you're left with 60.  So it's not worth it to work extra hard for ~5% of that time (~8.5% if we're saying 2 banking + 3 PE) to ideally position yourself for the remainder?  Some people are more career oriented and realize that if they're willing to invest more of their time earlier in their career, it will compound more meaningfully down the line.  Investing a few brutal years of work in your 20s can be the scale tipper that makes you worth a million or two by the time you're in your early-mid 30s (saving & spending habits obv taken into account).  You work in consulting so it's probably safe to say you value work/life balance more than say someone who targeted banking.  There's nothing wrong with that, in fact I'm sure there are plenty of nights the banker wonders if it would've been smarter to go your route.  But clearly you have separate goals for yourself vs someone who chose the IB -> PE path (same here, hence Corp Dev).


  • 3
  • Manager in Risk Mnmgt
Sep 8, 2020 - 2:17pm

I know a few people that worked there and most of the rumors are true; put in fake bids to get into processes then always looking to cut price no matter what, sweatshop at the associate and vp levels (associates are paid well below market), do a ton of work on every deal only to find out their committee hates it after months of work, etc. That being said, they all say they developed a great skillset and learned a ton that they can take elsewhere.

  • Operating Partner in Acct - Audit
Oct 25, 2020 - 10:29pm

Had a few friends that worked there. They universally said they were underpaid and overworked. Poor culture with tons of hierarchy, and weekends are just more days in the week. Just anecdotes but take it for what it's worth when making a decision to move to the buyside

  • Associate 2 in PE - Other
Jan 21, 2021 - 3:57pm

Any recent color on the culture at Middle Market specifically (which has a $3bn fund size, i.e. larger than the flagship LBO fund)? The Middle Market team appear to have a ton of VPs and Associates and not that many MDs and Principals. Good portion of the group is in NYC, with smaller offices in SF and Miami apparently.

Is HIG the kind of place where it's not great being an Associate or VP, but if you wait it out and get the Principal promotion it becomes more of a cushy gig because at that point you have two people working underneath you who can handle a lot of the grunt / less interesting work and as a result the hours improve materially?

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