Houston Investment Banking 2019

Klaud45's picture
Rank: Baboon | banana points 127

Wanted to start a discussion and get some opinions on the current state of banks/boutiques across Oil and Gas/Energy, especially since DB recently closed down its Houston office. I've heard that, as far as the BBs go, Barclays and Citi are considered some of the best for O&G, over GS/MS.

EBs like Evercore are quite strong in this space, apparently, and Jefferies/TPH are very strong in MM.

Anyone have any insight on what the different groups are like? Curious to know about the different cultures, deal flow, pay, etc. Hoping to recruit for a post-MBA Assoc role starting this Fall.

Comments (86)

Feb 1, 2019

In the energy space, Jefferies is far from MM. They did like a ~7.5bn deal in September. CS is also up there in dealflow alongside Barclays and Citi. In terms of pay, I'd say TPH, Jefferies, and Evercore will pay the most. Prestige not sure. In terms of culture for juniors, TPH, RBC, Evercore, UBS, and Simmons seem to enjoy their time spent.

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Feb 1, 2019

What about Lazard in Houston?

Feb 1, 2019

Only know one guy going there (hasn't started yet), so can't give an informed answer tbh

Feb 1, 2019

Lazard Houston is supposed to have a great culture.
Unfortunately it seems like they are in a bit of a tough spot and have lost a lot of their mid levels to other banks.
My feeling is that their setback has created growth for Moelis and Greenhill who are filling the spot where Lazard used to be, both investing in growth (and both took people from Lazard). The top EB's in Houston are still Evercore and TPH(PWP) but from a post MBA associate I would also advice to find a place with the right cultural fit, two years in the wrong spot as an analyst can be tough, but when you are stepping in as a career banker my priorities were different than just looking an prestige and deal flow.

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Feb 1, 2019

Culture over there is good. They really like to hype up their restructuring group. But I honestly couldn't name a single deal that they've advised on recently. Evercore, Jefferies, TPH, and Simmons (but only if you work on the OFS desk) usually gobble up most of the boutique deal flow in Houston.

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Feb 1, 2019

Agreed, and labelling TPH as "MM" is also very misleading. They worked on 3 out of 4 of the largest upstream corporate M&A deals last year (excluding BHP as that was technically an asset deal).

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Feb 5, 2019

What about placements? Any insight?

Work hard, work clean, & most of all do not give up.

Feb 1, 2019

Thoughts on Morgan Stanley's energy group? They seem to have strong dealflow, does anyone know how large their summer analyst/associate classes are?

Feb 1, 2019

Would rank the BBs as such:
1a: Citi/Barclays
1b: GS/MS

You honestly can't go wrong with any of those places from deal flow perspective. Culturally, they're certainly different.

Edit: Would also through CS in there somewhere as well, depending on what you're looking for. They've been known to curb stomp the competition in O&G ECM, but I'm not sure about how strong M&A advisory deal flow it.

Feb 1, 2019

If you are interested in working sweatshop analyst hours (or worse) in exchange for a ton of deal experience and unreal comp (caveated, as that will likely come with a clawback structure), Jefferies should be number one on your list. I believe your chances of breaking in will be tougher there as there seems to be somewhat of an innate bias to recruiting A-to-A (whether that's internally or from other top energy groups). You should tread with caution, as earning the "respect" of analysts and fellow associates as a post-MBA hire at groups like this will not be a straightforward task and could prove challenging if you aren't able to pick things up very quickly.

If you want a slightly more "reasonable" work-life balance while getting a well-rounded experience as an MBA Associate and enjoying the benefit of a brand name, I would suggest CS, JPM or MS. Barclays and Citi can be a hit or miss depending on what you get staffed on / who you primarily work under at the senior level, but are still good places to end up generally speaking. GS Houston (as evidenced by other recent threads, one of which may have been deleted) is no stranger to significant cultural issues. I would be sure to do your own due diligence via networking with former analysts/associates/VPs who would be willing to speak under some degree of confidentiality. In my personal opinion, going to TPH or Evercore would likely serve you better if you want to be involved in the energy M&A space long-term and don't mind putting in longer hours.

Don't know much about how things are going at RBC, WF, BMO from a cultural standpoint at the moment but I would assume that the hours will generally be slightly better than the names mentioned above. Simmons focuses primarily on OFS -- heard pretty good things about the culture and hours there although deal flow could be a hit or miss. I would stay away from Lazard. I think Moelis is a better bet between the two (non-Evercore EBs).

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Feb 1, 2019

SB given. I would also add WF Houston seems to have some brutal hours but comp and culture makes up for it. From talking to ppl there, overall seems to be a good place to be. Quick LinkedIn search would also show Upper MM PE exits have been strong

Feb 1, 2019

I would echo the sentiment on WF as well. Seems to fall in line from what I've heard from a post-MBA Assoc. there.

Feb 1, 2019

Great stuff.

What are your thoughts on BAML?

Feb 4, 2019

I've heard that Evercore hired a lot of people recently, particularly associates, so hours have supposedly been much better (almost easy) the past year

Feb 1, 2019

Do you think that trend is going to continue (are they looking to expand in Houston?), or was it a one-off thing?

Feb 1, 2019

How is RBC's energy group? I've heard that culture there is good, but what about deal flow, exit opps, etc?

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Feb 1, 2019

Energy being highly capital intensive, they use their balance sheet to their advantage. Can't speak much about their advisory presence. Although, they have the nicest office I've ever been in.

Feb 1, 2019

NY or Houston office?

Feb 1, 2019

Weak exit ops. Not sure on culture.

Feb 3, 2019

Is it a better than a place like UBS right now?

Feb 5, 2019

I know Moelis was touched on earlier, but does anyone have any more info regarding the experience at the junior level, how big their office is at the amongst the analyst/associate ranks, and, well, just generally how the Moelis Houston/energy platform is doing?

Thanks!

Feb 5, 2019

General Moelis experience from a junior's perspective is great. You're a product generalist so you get exposure to M&A/Rx and other product groups. You work hard but you learn a lot.

For Houston specifically, they're obviously not as well established as Evercore or TPH but they've been making moves to build out their practice and it's been working. Over the last few years, they've poached MDs from a lot of the more established shops. As a bank, they've got strong ties to the Middle East and as far as I understand it, run all of the major energy deals out of Houston. ADNOC strategic advisory and Saudi Aramco IPO (lol rip) mandates are some examples.

They don't have a lot of A&D deal flow yet (Jefferies still dominates that space). Moelis has been winning a lot of restructuring mandates in the industry though, and I think that's their bread and butter.

Good, surprisingly laid back culture in the Houston office, from what I've heard. Incoming analyst class of 5-6.

Sources: industry experience, friends at the firm

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Feb 5, 2019

Very helpful, thanks! Would you happen to know where comp/exits stack up in comparison to some of the other prominent boutiques (I.e. tph, evr)?

Feb 5, 2019

Interviewed there this past summer and adding on to that, they are trying to leverage their track record in creditor-side restructuring advisory to win more M&A mandates down the line. Also seem to have decent deal flow in midstream/downstream. Agreed that they seem to be growing quite a bit.

Use more debt than your competition or get out of the business. Any other policy is either self-limiting, no-win, or a bet that the competition will go bankrupt before they displace you. - Bruce Henderson

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Feb 6, 2019

Solid analysis

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Feb 5, 2019

My buddy is an associate at TPH. Total comp is $300-350K and typical hours are 9am - 12am with Saturdays off and half day Sunday. He gets lunch and dinner comped and they have a gym at the office. Good culture with few assholes. Lots of brainpower as they get plenty of former engineers.

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Feb 5, 2019

Going to go out on a limb and assume you meant midnight and not noon.. lol

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Feb 5, 2019

Ha, definitely midnight! If too many people read that they would have a stampede of analysts trying to lateral...

Apr 4, 2019

Any insight on how TPH recruits? Do they do OCR at McCombs and Jones(Rice)? I also know they have a good number of people from other T15 MBA programs. How do they recruit for TPH Houston?

Most Helpful
Feb 5, 2019

I would rank as below:
Tier 1:
Citi, TPH, Jefferies and EVR

Tier 1b:
Barcap, MS and GS

Tier 2:
CS, JPM, Laz, Simmons

Tier 3:
MC, RBC, WF, Scotia, BAML, UBS

Tier 4:
BMO, Greenhill, HL, Baird, PJT (opening office next month)

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Feb 1, 2019

Where's PJT's office going to be?

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Feb 5, 2019

Barcap should definitely be tier 1 and BAML is miles better than the other banks in your Tier 3. CS is also stronger. MS should be a tier down and Lazard should be bottom tier.

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Feb 5, 2019

Barclays was Tier 1 but haven't been active lately.

MS had a killer year, were on multiple corporate m&a deals. Heard people got paid well this year.

CS is more ECM focused and equity markets are shutdown.

Don't know much about Baml to be honest but haven't seen them on any deals last year except BHP which Barcap was leading

PJT is opening an office in Houston

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Feb 1, 2019

SB'd - agree with all points above, except maybe MS. Maybe I'm not as up to date on their deal activity in the last ~6 months, but historically, they've had a pretty strong group in Houston.

Feb 5, 2019

Is it in term of exit opps or?

Feb 3, 2019

In regards to the next 3-5 years, how to see this table shifting?

Feb 7, 2019

Anything official from PJT yet?

Feb 7, 2019

I mostly agree with this, but would also probably move Barclays up and definitely move Lazard down.

Would also put Guggenheim on there in tier 4. They have a new office in Houston that is pretty small, but I have seen them on a few things this past year.

Feb 11, 2019

WSO = GreekRank

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Mar 2, 2019

From an analyst/associate perspective, Moelis should be ranked much higher:

Comp:
Tier 1: (90k top bucket A1 bonus)

Exit Ops:
Tier 1: (limited network in energy because the office is young, but analysts did really well this past cycle / Moelis brand also opens doors outside of energy)

Deal flow / experience:
Tier 1b / Tier 2:
- Historically pretty variable, but currently lead Energy & Power league tables as a result of the ADNOC deals / had strong 2019 in RX
- Generalist experience (M&A / RX) > capital markets

Culture:
Tier 1 (reasonable hours)

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Mar 4, 2019

what were exits like for this analyst class? Are MF exits possible from Moelis?

Apr 7, 2019

LOL! You're hilarious.

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Feb 6, 2019

anyone have info on Stifel's Houston office? only about 2-3 years old, looks like a few former CS and jefferies guys based off quick linkedin search.

Feb 1, 2019

Most people wouldn't be aware of them even existing. Haven't seen them on anything ever.

Probably doing very small cap mkts and advisory A&D.

Feb 5, 2019

I've had a couple out-of-mandate pitches from them come my way.. E&P cap raise, downstream services, etc.

Feb 3, 2019

What does PJ solomon's Office in Houston typically do?

Feb 20, 2019

A&D

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Feb 11, 2019

-

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Feb 11, 2019

.

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Feb 11, 2019

-

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Funniest
Feb 1, 2019

I can't tell if this post is a joke.

80-100 hour weeks as an entry level oil engineer at a desk? I've never met one that's worked more than 50 hours.

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Feb 11, 2019
high hopes:

I can't tell if this post is a joke.

80-100 hour weeks as an entry level oil engineer at a desk? I've never met one that's worked more than 50 hours.

1) I'm in consulting now -- long hours + travel
2) when engineers (even entry level) go into the field, or onto rigs, we work 12-16 hour shifts for weeks on end. The hours add up.
3) I spent many weeks in the field over the years

Post isn't a joke, I'm honestly curious and considering whether or not Houston banking is where I want to spend my life

Apr 6, 2019

I've heard the opposite from someone in oil and gas at Goldman Sachs Houston; apparently everyone wears apple watches.
They're pretty happy there as a post-MBA.

Scientist: Molecular Cancer Genetics.

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Feb 15, 2019

Anyone have any experience with Intrepid or Petrie Partners?

Array

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Feb 16, 2019

both very elite and extremely selective

edit: was praising the firms

Why the monkey shit? The deals they do are extremely complex, and very tough to get an offer from.

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Feb 27, 2019

Does anyone know what schools these Houston banks are recruiting from for SA and FT. What schools are considered targets for what banks?

Feb 1, 2019

The core Texas target schools are UT Austin, SMU, Texas A&M and Rice. Top candidates from TCU also get looks, but the path is definitely tougher than from the first four schools (generally speaking). Outside of that, a decent chunk of Houston banks will target Tulane, Vanderbilt, Emory and UVA but I haven't really heard of too many banks going over to those campuses to do OCR (obviously primarily a geographic hurdle rather than an academic one). I would expect candidates at those schools to do ~2 rounds of phone/skype interviews before being invited in for a superday in Houston. With that said, a candidate from any school that is recognized as a "national target" should be able to network their way in with a little bit of effort and as long as they have a compelling reason for "why oil & gas".

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Feb 27, 2019

As a Vanderbilt sophomore with a 3.7 GPA, do you think I should be targeting Houston for the best chances to break into IB?

Feb 1, 2019

Ran into a fair amount of Vandy guys at my superdays in Houston, so it shouldnt be too difficult.

Mar 1, 2019

Any thoughts on MUFG's O&G team in Houston?

Feb 1, 2019

Who?

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Mar 3, 2019

Anyone have any insight on the SA 2020 recruiting timeline for Houston banks?

Mar 27, 2019

Have been hearing mid-summer for first rounds, but wouldn't be surprised if it moved forward

Feb 5, 2019

Does anyone know about the intern overtime pay policy across banks?

Apr 4, 2019

Standard 1.5x

Feb 5, 2019

Is it just BBs? Or also boutique banks like Evercore, Jefferies, TPH, etc

Apr 15, 2019

capital IQ intelligence provides league tables for both capital markets and M&A, but aggregates power with o&g so is a little diluted.