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Comments (42)

Dec 30, 2020 - 11:55pm

Every firm's founding somehow related back to Michael Milken if they are based in LA. Hence the term BoM (Baby of Milken)

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Dec 31, 2020 - 2:27pm

This has been covered pretty extensively. Summary of what I've read from other posts: 

Clearlake: Real up-and-comer / has already up-and-come with the recent ~$7B fundraise and incredible returns. Heard second-hand multiple times that hours are bad. Unsure about people

Oaktree: Traditional PE fund that's probably the most famous in LA only with LGP. Good returns and program. 

LGP: Similar to Oaktree, another famous one in LA. Heard good things about culture and progression (would be my top pick if given the choice, which i do not)

Marlin: Was a rising star with fund 1 and 2. Seems like things have tapered off with fund 4/5 showing sub-10% IRR returns. From prior posts, it seems like progression is very long (3 yrs Associate + 3 years S. Associate + 5+ years as VP). TBD on culture

Ares: High pay / bad culture. Some cite potential recent changes in culture but TBD if true 

Platinum: Historically bad culture but apparently have turned things around. MF level in terms of size and returns. 

Apollo: Same as Ares - high pay / bad culture / good name

Gores: Fallen star it seems. Lots of talent left to make Marlin, which is respectively struggling right now 

Obviously a lot more color if you find all the posts here on WSO but that about sums it up in short. 

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  • Analyst 2 in IB - Ind
Jan 1, 2021 - 1:34am

OAK is not a traditional PE fund, they are distressed. They have one Distressed PE / SSG group. Mainly hire RX people.

Jan 4, 2021 - 4:23am

I think by traditional he means more typical of what you'd see in the NY PE scene in terms of culture and WLB. Though you're completely right on their investment mandate / candidate criteria 

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  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
Jan 4, 2021 - 4:26am

APO culture is total garbo there speaking as an ex-APO NY associate. Smaller office, lots of facetime, pretty awful senior guys. None of it is conducive to a good working environment. Even their MBA summer associate opted to look for something else at the end of his internship

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  • Associate 1 in PE - LBOs
Apr 14, 2021 - 2:02pm

Marlin and Ares are both sweatshops

Current Ares employee here and have to say I disagree. You will grind when on a live process, but outside of that context the WLB has been much better than anticipated tbh. Don't know why this site seems to perpetuate the sweatshop label (likely because it was a sweatshop prior to 2018)

Jan 1, 2021 - 1:44pm

A few other firms with  >$1bn latest fund raises with good reputations:

Levine Leichtman: used to have a bad rep in terms of culture but has apparently gotten better. Invests across a variety of industries 

Brentwood Associates: primarily consumer investing, one of the older firms based in LA, heard decent culture and pay

Freeman Spogli: Consumer investing

Shamrock Capital: media & entertainment investing, good culture and pay 

Odyssey Investment Partners: latest fund is >$3bn, industrials investing. Heard that culture there is not great

Aurora Capital: good fund with really good returns

  • Associate 1 in PE - LBOs
Apr 12, 2021 - 8:17pm

Seems super top heavy...can't imagine work life balance can be that great...

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Apr 16, 2021 - 9:27am

Lots of new consumer funds are started in LA. But they are quite small (probably sub $200m first time fund), so that'll have to be something you're ok with.

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Apr 17, 2021 - 7:04pm

I just get inbounds every once in a while from recruiters. I don't really pay them any mind because I'm not looking to move to LA. Maybe someone more knowledgeable on here can help.

  • Associate 1 in PE - LBOs
Apr 20, 2021 - 12:13am

Interviewed with them previously, their mandate is seemed pretty broad (i.e. credit/turnaround investing to traditional buyout). They said their broad investing style as a good thing but not sure as a PE associate thats the experience you would want. 

Think they're planning on fundraising for fund II next year though not sure of the size of the fund. The VP/Principals I interviewed with seemed nice enough though can't speak more about the culture

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Apr 20, 2021 - 11:27am

Never heard of them until this post. Good first fund raise, but there are so many partners/ senior people compared to 2 associates. Seems like a miserable experience for those associates.

  • Principal in PE - LBOs
Apr 20, 2021 - 2:05pm

Does anyone have more color on Clearlake? Seems like they've had a good run in the past few years and I think just raised a 6 or 7bn fund. Would appreciate any insight into mandate, sector focus, culture, etc. From LinkedIn looks like they have some pretty pedigreed talent in terms of prior shops. 

Apr 21, 2021 - 2:22am

They're a solid firm. Spoke with them about a Sr. Associate role early 2020. Flexible mandate so they write both buyout and minority checks. Typically play in industrials and software/tech-enabled services. Sounded like they were aggressively scaling their team for the new fund. I only spoke to a handful of people, but they were all very pleasant to speak with.

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