Comments (49)

Dec 5, 2013

Lazard is a sweatshop no matter what office

happy to give advice; no asking for referrals please

Dec 6, 2013

Lazard tech in SF is pretty weak, definitely gets overshadowed by the other tech groups on the west coast (eg GS TMT, MS Tech, JPM TMT, CS Tech, DB Tech, Qatalyst, etc)

Lazard healthcare in SF is decent, they were recently on the Amgen/Onyx deal

Dec 6, 2013

know anything of their convertible securities group?

Dec 6, 2013
artofwar:

know anything of their convertible securities group?

It's shit. Laz has a terrible capital markets platform. No deal flow at all.

Dec 6, 2013

how about Lazard tech in Boston?

Dec 6, 2013

Dude... what are you guys talking about. Laz SF tech advised on IBM/Cognos (IBM's largest deal), Google/Motorola (Google's largest deal), Microsoft/aQuantive and Skype and virtually all their large acquisitions. Other deals for HP and Cisco. Not sure how you can do much better than that. Yes, they don't do many PE deals, but they got the large-cap M&A down cold.

Dec 6, 2013
oneone4:

Dude... what are you guys talking about. Laz SF tech advised on IBM/Cognos (IBM's largest deal), Google/Motorola (Google's largest deal), Microsoft/aQuantive and Skype and virtually all their large acquisitions. Other deals for HP and Cisco. Not sure how you can do much better than that. Yes, they don't do many PE deals, but they got the large-cap M&A down cold.

You're a bit behind the times, friend. Qatalyst owns large-cap tech M&A banking and it's been like that for the past few years now.

IBM/Cognos, Microsoft/aQuantive were almost 7 years ago. Lazard wasn't on Skype. Microsoft didn't use advisors, and GS/JPM advised Skype. Dunno what you're referring to. Google/Motorola was a good win. Pretty much their only one. Considering Lazard has a limited IPO platform, it's definitely one of the weaker tech groups.

Laz Healthcare is very solid though.

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Dec 6, 2013

HC platform is fairly strong in SF, though tech is not too bad. Lazard did actually advise Microsoft on the loan they provided and strategic related matters, think though that was thanks to Vernon Jordan mostly. If you can get into the HC group I would go for that.

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Dec 6, 2013
GBB_19NHS:

HC platform is fairly strong in SF, though tech is not too bad. Lazard did actually advise Microsoft on the Dell buyout on the loan they provided and strategic related matters, think though that was thanks to Vernon Jordan mostly. If you can get into the HC group I would go for that.

Dec 6, 2013

There really hasn't been multi-billion dollar tech M&As lately, so the data points from IBM/MSFT/GOOG have to stick. Not sure why you'd say Qatalyst owns it. As far as I know, they seem to get stuck on a lot of smaller sell-sides, but honestly, who isn't. Whatever the case may be, I hands down concede that Q is a terrific platform... no one turns down an offer from Q. No point in flaming and arguing. [GS/MS are obviously awesome as well, but you hear them in the news a lot because they do a lot of front page tech IPOs]

OP's question was neither about the tech group or the HC group. The converts team is a good team. Good people, but there seems to be quite a bit of turnover. The reality is that that group isn't M&A or restructuring, which are the two main draws to LAZ. But it's still a good banking job which you can spin later. I wouldn't prioritize it as your top banking offer, but if it's your only one....

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Dec 6, 2013
oneone4:

There really hasn't been multi-billion dollar tech M&As lately, so the data points from IBM/MSFT/GOOG have to stick. Not sure why you'd say Qatalyst owns it. As far as I know, they seem to get stuck on a lot of smaller sell-sides, but honestly, who isn't. Whatever the case may be, I hands down concede that Q is a terrific platform... no one turns down an offer from Q. No point in flaming and arguing. [GS/MS are obviously awesome as well, but you hear them in the news a lot because they do a lot of front page tech IPOs]

OP's question was neither about the tech group or the HC group. The converts team is a good team. Good people, but there seems to be quite a bit of turnover. The reality is that that group isn't M&A or restructuring, which are the two main draws to LAZ. But it's still a good banking job which you can spin later. I wouldn't prioritize it as your top banking offer, but if it's your only one....

Serious question: do you even work in the industry? Or are you some Stanford kid just talking out of his ass? You had 0 posts prior to entering this thread and as far as I can tell, you literally know nothing about technology investment banking.

1. Deals from 2007 aren't relevant now. George fucking Boutros still worked at CS back in 2007. The financial system was collapsing back in 2007. Bank of America and Merrill Lynch were two different companies. Lehman was still around. The banking landscape is totally different.

You want to know the biggest transaction in 2007? TXU. For $44.4 billion. The M&A/debt markets were completely insane. First Data went for $29 billion earlier that year. Largest technology buyout in history.

So yeah, we're not including 2007 deals in our precedent transactions sets any more, nor are they relevant in a discussion of good/bad tech teams. CS was probably the best tech group on the street circa 2007, to be totally honest.

2. "Not many billion dollar tech deals?" This is like the hottest tech M&A market we've seen since the financial crisis.

Not-comprehensive billion+ Technology M&A Transactions, Jan. 2013 through Dec. 2013:
Ancestry.com acq by Permira: $1.6B
AcmePacket acq by Oracle: $2.1B
Tumblr acq by Yahoo: $1.1B
Intuit divestiture to Thoma Bravo: $1B
BMC bought out by BainCap/Golden Gate: $6.9B
Sourcefire acq by Cisco: $2.7B
Waze acq by Google: $1B
Activision buyback from Vivendi: $8B
Dell bought out by SilverLake/Michael Dell: ~$23B

And you're dismissing GS and MS "because they do a lot of front page tech IPOs." Why would you NOT want to do front page tech IPOs? Let me guess, because M&A is "better for PE?" Newsflash: tech buyout funds love IPO experience. It's one of the best ways to gauge a candidates' actual industry knowledge. Your ultra-technical five-year bottoms up revenue builds for semi manufacturer? It could turn out to be totally fucking useless if the tablet market market collapses. So Francisco Partners VP C wants to know if you can speak cogently about the mobile devices space, and the best way for you to learn about it is to have worked on relevant IPO transactions on the space. Deep-dives are a bitch, and bakeoffs in particular suck ass. But you will actually learn something. And growth equity, like General Atlantic, H&F? You're doing pseudo-VC work sometimes. Industry knowledge is everything.

But yeah, you know, who wants to do the Dropbox IPO. That's ECM's job, and they're a bunch of little pussies.

3. Let me reiterate that Lazard converts sucks horse dick.

If you would like proof, here's a link to the league tables through 3 quarters, 2013. It's for Global Capital Markets, but converts fall under "equity-linked" transactions. http://www.bloomberg.com/professional/files/2013/1.... Notice that Lazard is not listed anywhere in this 20 page report? That's because their capital markets platform sucks. In fact, their CEO of Cap Markets resigned a month ago. In fact, they're considering a JV/sale of the entire division.Link: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-31/Lazard-capital-markets-ceo-leaves-after-strategy-review.html. Lazard is an elite advisory practice, first and foremost. They've never been big in any of the capital markets areas, and it looks like they're withdrawing from the area in the near future. Their SF converts team has always sucked. There's like 1 analyst who's stuck doing all this bullshit pitch work. As you can see from the league tables, they haven't closed anything of note in the past year (two years, since I remember this identical question coming up last year, and I checked then). The exit opps would be, literally "stay for an extra year and move to Laz Tech/HC" or "lateral ASAP" because, you know, the last thing on earth you'd want to do is specialize in converts at a shitty desk on the West coast where you never close anything and the markets are 3 hours ahead and there aren't any hedge funds remotely interested in your skill-set.

Again: Laz converts is terrible. It may not exist next year. Should you take it if you have no other options? Yes, absolutely, don't be a fucking retard. But should you keep looking for other stuff in the meantime? 100% yes. I hate it when people have this "oh it's a banking job, everything is relative, you could be working at In N Out for $10 an hour" attitude. Yeah, well we're not talking about In N Out. We're talking about investment banking positions, and if you can get a job at Laz Converts, you can get a position at other places too. So let's stop giving each other blowjobs for getting IB jobs and be honest about the relative strength of different groups, yeah? I certainly wouldn't want to make pitchbooks all day, stare at a Bloomberg screen, and dream of lateraling to Jefferies Tech down in Foster City (or wherever it is) while my buddies two cubes over are getting hit up by headhunters for PE/VC jobs 2 months after they finish training.

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Dec 6, 2013

This was a strong, comprehensive post. +1

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Dec 6, 2013

LBJH I love your posts (partially because I'm in TMT with a soft spot for Tech) and your vehement hate of uniformed people talking shit out their ass.

Dec 6, 2013

Wow. Loved the post. Seriously, man, chill the hell out. My point was that you can't compare the specialized shops with the BBs. We all agree Qatalyst is tops, but you don't see them in the league tables either.

Thanks for taking the time to write and research your post - hopefully it didn't make you stay late slaving away in your cube, flaming on a guy you don't know. I'm not "some Stanford kid" with no background in banking, but I'll just accept whatever you throw at me. Let me say though that I have the highest respect for our colleagues in GS and MS (who wouldn't), as well as those in ECM. I've played the game enough that I know IB recruiting, as well as group assignments, are both tough and random. Whatever bank, whatever group, we're all trying to do what we can for our careers here. No need to trash on any groups, or for that matter, the Jefferies guys. And yes, they're in Foster City.

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Dec 6, 2013
LBJ's hair:

Boomslam.

Dec 8, 2013

Another league table for first 3 quarters of 2013
http://www.bloomberg.com/professional/files/2013/1...

CTRL+F "Lazard". They did 2 deals up until October, which is a little better than what I thought. Horrible nonetheless, but I don't think they're on the verge of not existing next year.

Feb 8, 2014

Lazard tech sf runs a pretty great shop due to their strong ties with Google, Microsoft, IBM, etc. They don't do any underwriting since they're "pure-play" financial advisory but they've been on hella big name deals like Google-Motorola, Google-Nest, and recently Lenovo-Moto as well. Pretty strong for a boutique

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Sep 25, 2015

any thoughts on Citi tech in SF?

Oct 31, 2015

Has the Convertible Securities Advisory group in SF improved since 2013? Looks like they have done some deals in 2015. Have a phone interview coming up. Thanks in advance!

Oct 31, 2015

....

Oct 31, 2015
lateralguy:

....

Oct 31, 2015

Bump for 2014 input

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Oct 31, 2015

I don't know anyone in the program so I can't speak to it that way, but I do know a girl who lateralled from another tech company to Google and loves it. She works on the technical/engineering side of things though. When I asked her about working on the finance side of the business she said of the people she knew, they didn't have the same morale as the rest of the company and were undercompensated/underappreciated compared to other tech companies. On the other hand it does have the prestige of Google.

Just some thoughts.

RBS is better than YOUR BS, and that's not saying much

Oct 31, 2015

I work at neither but I don't think there is a Fortune 500 training program with as much prestige as work as an IBD analyst. It's easier to leave banking to goto Google than it would be to go the other way. That's my guess.

Oct 31, 2015

I disagree with ilikewimminz, unless you have an offer from McKinsey, Goldman Sachs, or a top HF/PE shop, take the job!

Google is one of the best things that an employer or B-school admissions officer can see on your resume. Regardless of what you want to do down the road, it will open up a lot of opprotunities for you. Also, all the people I know who work at Google love it, Pool tables, world class meals, etc. Not sure if a FA at Google gets to do any Corporate Development work, but positions with the CorDev groups at companies like Google rival top exit opprotunites with Ibanks.

Oct 31, 2015

corp dev is different than ibanking--more akin to consulting in terms of skillset built..I would take Google corp dev over most consulting, but not Bain or McKinsey, and prob not BCG either. Bain has many of the positive cultural elements of Google, with better exit optns into buyside, nonprofit, and industry

Oct 31, 2015

Really? Almost everyone in the Microsoft corp dev group are ex-bankers.

Oct 31, 2015

Keep in mind that the financial analyst program in corporate finance is more mundane finance work, definitely not banking or corporate development work. Heard that the work is more budgeting, accounting, etc, rather than transactional work. Name brand and lifestyle definitely makes up for it though.

Oct 31, 2015

Besides Google, how do you guys feel about taking an internship or full time position with the Financial Analyst program of companies like Microsoft, Apple, Yahoo, IBM, etc.?

Oct 31, 2015

google is way overrated imo. if you are comparing the google position versus MBB or GS/MS/?? then i really don't think there's a question. after working MBB/GS/MS/?? You will have great placement potential for Microsoft, Google, IBM, GE, and the list goes on.

if you are comparing google to MM banks or not so prestigious boutiques, then you have more to think about.

if you don't want to work the hours of banking, or the traveling of consulting, then again, the choice should be pretty easy.

there is nothing wrong with the google name, but it won't be any better than top tier banks/hf/pe/consulting. there are a few factors that matter in your decision. what are some of your criteria? your original question is lacking in context.

Oct 31, 2015

Well my criteria are as follows:

Hours: don't want to work more than 60 / week
Dress: casual
Pay: Good, at least as much as Big 4
Prestige: I want this company to help with MBA admissions

Those are basically it.

Oct 31, 2015

you def need to go to google then...based on what you said above. It will be great for MBA admissions especially.

Oct 31, 2015

The OP has the offer from Google. Mine is more like Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo, IBM.

Oct 31, 2015

apple microsoft yahoo ibm would be any less than google. (although maybe IBM has lost some credibility over the years) id argue that it is in no way inferior in terms of brand name. any adcom that thinks different doesnt deserve their job.

name of your employer only goes so far (being that these are already fortune 1-500/high growth hot companies), being an admin at google doesn't help anymore than being an admin anywhere else. if it did, then that's just stupid. admin work is admin work. the nature of what you will be doing will matter a great deal, in terms of MBA admissions

*i have not been to b-school, nor am i in the process of applying atm. take this for what it's worth, although i think i make a good deal of sense. I do however work in the valley, and know people who work at many of the companies you name.

Oct 31, 2015

at google, the engineers are really at the top of the food chain. just something to consider

Oct 31, 2015

How hard would it be to transition from a Finance rotation program to an MM?

Oct 31, 2015

I know a guy who does marketing there and loves it, but I have heard that non programmers are kinda though of as second class citizens.

Oct 31, 2015

ok, so it seems like my initial post was lacking in clarity, so let me clear up some things (thanks, ilikewimminz).

decision:
Google - Associate Financial Analyst vs. Bank of America - Mergers & Acquisition / Transaction Development Group (M&A / TDG)

To my knowledge, the Google AFA program is very new - this is the second year it's in effect, and they're really looking to explore many roads with this Finance arm. That being said, the program itself (as per online description) is a rotational program through any three divisions of your choosing: Financial Planning & Analysis, Accounting, Internal Audit, Accounts Payable, Billing and Revenue. There is a Corporate Development M&A office present but unfortunately they don't take analysts (primarily composed of professionals with 5-7+ years of experience). Some of the responsibilities of analysts will include in-house financial analysis of Google's products, analysis of performance and growth metrics, strategic analysis for Google, financial reporting of packages to management (?) and ad-hoc financial analyses.

Conversely, Bank of America M&A / TDG group focuses in middle-market, pretty unique and cool group with what seems to be an innovative approach to decisions and M&A in general (esp. with their TDG group). THe rest is straight M&A Investment Banking (self-explanatory).

My criteria/decisions:
I want to learn as much possible about valuation (& everything associated with it) and finance. I want to be able to use the experience and knowledge that I gain in these next two/three years (at either place) to possibly enter into a hedge fund, pe shop, b-school, or even start my own thing. I'm basically looking for a place where I can learn as much as possible and grow in learning from it (hours worked and such things are very minimal factors for me, if you're going to work anywhere, you'll have to put in the hours, period).

So with all this, can Google's AFA program provide me with a good experience? Would it "make the cut" and allow me to enter to a hedge fund, pe shop, b-school, etc.? or is it not on par with a straight investment banking job (doing M&A) which can ultimately set me up well to enter into those said categories? What are pros/cons of Google as AFA and pros/cons of BofA M&A/TDG (esp. given BofA's investment bank) ?

Sorry for the long entry, but a clarification was necessary - let me know what insights you guys have, this has been tremendously helpful thus far!

Oct 31, 2015

I think at an IB, you have the chance to get more valuable experience in case you wanna go on with PE/HF and all that hot stuff...

At Google you will more likely do accounting and controlling focused work, which will not really get you the desired experience for the "hot stuff"...

All in all, stick with what you want to do, and what you would like to do. Eventually you will reach your goals...

Also, I think ppl tend to get carried away with the brand-game. Brand means a lot but not all, i.e. if you do well at BofA you will reach your goals (even though it is not Goldman), whether it be MBA or the "hot stuff".

I think what you have to decide is you wanna do the typicyal corp fin type of finance or the M&A finance...

Good luck!

Oct 31, 2015

She did not like it very much and the work was quite mundane (even more so than banking)... things like making a cafeteria budget, lots of accounting etc. She was from a tech background and thought it would be a good way to get into "finance" (it wasn't). In the Valley (or even tech companies elsewhere), finance people are treated the same way that IT people are treated in banks.

For anyone who's considering going straight into corporate finance at a tech company, you'd be better served by sucking it up and doing banking for a year and then seeing what exit opps you have after a year. They will be much stronger and you can actually get Corporate Development (so transaction-oriented work rather than accounting) work... and hours are still very good (60 or less per week) for the most part.

If your only options are Google or BoA and you want to learn as much about finance possible, I'd say just deal with the pain for a year and go with BoA. If you really hate it you can explore other options after then, and if not you can much more easily get a PE/HF/other buyside job starting after your second year.

There is no way PEs will look at you with only the Google AFA experience. Yes, the Google brand name is good but you need transaction experience which is what you won't get with that job.

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Oct 31, 2015

After two years as an analyst, will there be opportunities to join Google or similar firms in corporate development? What would responsibilities & comp look like?

Also, kind of an unrelated question but while we're on the note of exits - how much do people make in middle market PE firms after a 2 year banking stint? I know it really depends, but I've looked all over and haven't been able to find any info about this. Could you give me a general range, something like a 25-75 percentile? Thanks.

Oct 31, 2015

What are the most likely exit opportunities after doing Google's Financial Analyst program?

How competitive will a candidate be after completing this program in terms of applying for a top Bschool?

Thanks.

Oct 31, 2015

I feel like there are some misconceptions about Google's finance department - while Google is a great brand, keep in mind the scope of any role related to finance will not be the experience you will gain in IB/top tier consulting. Google Finance is more like a middle office role at any large company- just like Goldman's internal finance or Bank of America's internal finance.

Your requirements are:

Hours: don't want to work more than 60 / week
Dress: casual
Pay: Good, at least as much as Big 4
Prestige: I want this company to help with MBA admission

I think MBB hits all of those, but better pay, more MBA assistance, and similar perks to Google, and I think that even though IB doesn't hit the lifestyle requirements it is much better prep for

Keep in mind the best role in any company is to be in a revenue-generating, product-creating role - in investment banking this is what financial analysts do, in consulting thats what consultants do. However, at Google, this is NOT what you will do in a financial analyst role. I think being involved in a principal investing arm would be the most interesting area, but I wouldn't be surprised if Google did most of its financing based on external advice (from IB and consultants).

Oct 31, 2015