MM to Bulge Bracket Lateral

I currently work at a middle market bank in industry coverage in NYC.

I just received a lateral offer from a larger bank. I'm likely going to accept but recognize that things have probably been relatively easy on me here (80 - 90 hour weeks). I'm just wondering how big the difference in culture will actually be.

If anyone has made a similar move or can offer some insight I'd greatly appreciate it. Understand this is largely group dependent as well.

Thanks

Comments (171)

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Dec 31, 1969

How much risk are you willing to take - and is the BB offer worth so much to you that you're willing to risk both offers?
Frankly, it's unpredictable as to what exactly will happen... If it's probable that the MM will find out (possible in a top MM) which BB you're going to, then the chances of you getting fucked is way higher. HR will most likely contact them considering you've already signed your offer, and it's all downhill from there.

'I' wouldn't do it, but it all depends on your risk tolerence. Make sure you consider your situation more carefully - if you mess up, you'll end up a non-target with no offer who's blacklisted from two banks.

Dec 31, 1969

Question for you - did the interviews with the bulge bracket firm take place AFTER you already received an offer from the MM firm? If not, then for future reference, you should have followed up with the bulge bracket firm more proactively, explaining to them that you had an exploding offer from the MM firm that you had to respond to.

If yes, then, also for future reference, you should have made clear at the outset (e.g. at the early stages of the interview process) that you already had an offer on the table. Now, if you did do exactly that and the bulge bracket firm decided to extend you an offer regardless, then I think you would probably be in a safer position (though nothing is guaranteed) to renege on the MM firm.

Generally speaking, however, the potential consequences of reneging on a job offer is usually greater than the potential reward.

In your situation, HR is not really who you should be worried about. It's the senior bankers that you interviewed with in the final round/superday - these are the one's who make the final decision. If the senior bankers from the middle market firm are chill, you might be able to get away with reneging. If they are ass holes, then you might want to reconsider.

Remember, this industry is a small one, pretty much everyone knows each other. If a MD from one bank wanted to go out of his way to screw over some kid who reneged on him, it would not be hard at all for him to make a few phone calls and figure out which bank gave you the offer.

Good luck.

Dec 31, 1969
Deo et Patriae:

Question for you - did the interviews with the bulge bracket firm take place AFTER you already received an offer from the MM firm? If not, then for future reference, you should have followed up with the bulge bracket firm more proactively, explaining to them that you had an exploding offer from the MM firm that you had to respond to.

If yes, then, also for future reference, you should have made clear at the outset (e.g. at the early stages of the interview process) that you already had an offer on the table. Now, if you did do exactly that and the bulge bracket firm decided to extend you an offer regardless, then I think you would probably be in a safer position (though nothing is guaranteed) to renege on the MM firm.

Generally speaking, however, the potential consequences of reneging on a job offer is usually greater than the potential reward.

In your situation, HR is not really who you should be worried about. It's the senior bankers that you interviewed with in the final round/superday - these are the one's who make the final decision. If the senior bankers from the middle market firm are chill, you might be able to get away with reneging. If they are ass holes, then you might want to reconsider.

Remember, this industry is a small one, pretty much everyone knows each other. If a MD from one bank wanted to go out of his way to screw over some kid who reneged on him, it would not be hard at all for him to make a few phone calls and figure out which bank gave you the offer.

Good luck.

This is a great post. One thing I'd just add / clarify is that for SA, the MDs probably aren't going to be heavily involved or care too much. Although they likely played a part in the offer decisions, I doubt they are so plugged into the recruiting process that they'll care enough about an SA reneging to go find out who it was, let alone where they're going.

That said, it's possible some MDs are just complete dicks and would want to screw you over; I haven't encountered any but I'm sure they are out there.

Dec 31, 1969

Just an idea: you could accept both offers, and show up for work the first day at the MM and exclaim "this isn't for me!" and quit, then continue your internship at the BB. Might even get to keep some of your signing bonus at the MM too ;)

Dec 31, 1969

This is an interesting situation to be in. Nevertheless, it is a situation that happens each year during recruitment season. You see, you are over-thinking it. HR is not going to contact HR at the BB and screw you. As an incoming summer intern, the fact of the matter is these banks do not value you as much as you value them- Until you prove yourself down the line. Take it from me, I have a few friends who did exactly this- Receive offers from MM banks and reneg to go BB. They are currently doing just fine.

To further play devils advocate, your prospects going into FT recruiting will be better from having a BB on your resume as opposed to a MM (which is still great).

Dec 31, 1969

Bump. Would be interested in hearing more perspectives.

Just to add some more information - I've had no contact with "senior bankers" at the MM, didn't interview with anyone senior other than maybe 1 VP.

Dec 31, 1969

which of the following two things would make it harder for you to sleep at night:

1. knowing you turned down a BB and that your future prospects are potentially marginally dimmer because of it
or
2. a small chance you'll get totally screwed over and need to bust your ass for FT recruiting to land anything at all

"Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be"

Dec 31, 1969

Are we talking Piper to GS or Jefferies to BAML? If #2, not worth it.

Dec 31, 1969

I'm guessing Strong MM means (JEF/HL/WB) to GS/MS/JPM

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

HR procedure will vary by bank, but more likely, will vary by individual

While not good for your reputation to reneg, need to weigh against benefits of your other opportunity

Most likely outcome - someone in HR is pissed for 5 min, then stops caring and life moves on..

Dec 31, 1969

Would be foolish not to take the BB offer

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

Dude. People freak out about these things. I'm in b-school and have had a job before. You renege.

Show the bank the same respect they show you. Do what is best for you.

"They are all former investment bankers that were laid off in the economic collapse that Nancy Pelosi caused. They have no marketable skills, but by God they work hard."

Dec 31, 1969

If you do renege - keep your mouth shut on where you'll be going if they ask you. Because if someone wanted to be a dick and look you up, if you're coming from a complete non-target, it won't be too hard to find out where you got an offer.

Truthfully though, an SA hire doesn't matter much to a bank. If they lose one, they can easily find someone they like just as much next on their list. So I doubt it will come to someone really wanting to go out of their way to screw you. And since you didn't get either offers through OCR, your risk is greatly reduced compared to being at a target where in worse case scenarios a student gets barred from OCR and offers rescinded because some firm threw a fit.

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

Not hard even if you don't work in NYC. I've seen numerous laterals from my MM firm. I'd be ready to put in 9-12 months at your MM and really knowing your stuff is a given.

Dec 31, 1969

Thanks for the insight, man. Which banks do your colleagues usually end up lateraling to in NYC?

Dec 31, 1969

I've seen Barclays, Moelis, Perella, Wells, HL and Goldman.

Dec 31, 1969

Would recommend doing this after your first year. Most common route seems to be through HHs / friends.

Before making this move, I'd ask what your key motivation for lateraling would be. There are lots of issues w/switching banks (e.g. being bumped down a year, losing credibility that you built up since your work product is unknown etc.) though moving from a MM to a bulge CAN help w/buyside recruiting...

Dec 31, 1969

From what I've seen - the opposite is more common: BB -> MM. A lot of BB guys after the Analyst 3 or Associate years get tired of the hours and move on to a smaller shop where they get promote to VP/ED with perhaps less prestige, less opportunity for making the huge bonuses of BBs, but much better work-life balance.

Dec 31, 1969
mountainvalley:

From what I've seen - the opposite is more common: BB -> MM. A lot of BB guys after the Analyst 3 or Associate years get tired of the hours and move on to a smaller shop where they get promote to VP/ED with perhaps less prestige, less opportunity for making the huge bonuses of BBs, but much better work-life balance.

The better work-life balance thing doesn't make a ton of sense to me-heard of people at all three shops (HW, Jefferies, HLHZ) getting killed, especially at the junior level. Definitely group dependent but not true that MMs always have better QOL

Dec 31, 1969
mountainvalley:

From what I've seen - the opposite is more common: BB -> MM. A lot of BB guys after the Analyst 3 or Associate years get tired of the hours and move on to a smaller shop where they get promote to VP/ED with perhaps less prestige, less opportunity for making the huge bonuses of BBs, but much better work-life balance.

i mean sure less prestige okay, but last time i checked most BBs are capped like 100-150k for cash bonus, the rest is paid in stock and you'd be locked in for a time period...

SO lmaoo if anything, going to a MM after a 3rd year can be advantageous since a MM firm like HW/Houlihan that is privately traded and didnt need TARP money (so there is less regulation) will actually not only pay you just as much or more $ (yes gasp/shock that MMs today are paying more than BBs often times post-lehman because they dont have rogue traders or insane losses from prop-trading or huge ridiculous overheads), but all in cash. this is such a typical BB person hating on MM firm lol

oh also to point out, BofA, CS, Barclays, UBS (do they still have an IB team in US? lol), Citi ALL have cut employee headcount in the past 6 months by the thousands (only one that has been growing really in Wells Fargo-props to them), some by the 10 thousands since summer alone...so again, being at a top MM also can allow for better job security. so dont condescendingly make it seem like the move from a BB to a MM is being demoted when this arguement shows that it could be a step up if you're a long term banker.....but sure if you want to do 2 and out to PE than yes BBs generally will have the leg up. im sure compbanker would like this post specifically as well ;)

I don't throw darts at a board. I bet on sure things. Read Sun-tzu, The Art of War. Every battle is won before it is ever fought- GG

Dec 31, 1969
AnalystMonkey2769:
mountainvalley:

From what I've seen - the opposite is more common: BB -> MM. A lot of BB guys after the Analyst 3 or Associate years get tired of the hours and move on to a smaller shop where they get promote to VP/ED with perhaps less prestige, less opportunity for making the huge bonuses of BBs, but much better work-life balance.

i mean sure less prestige okay, but last time i checked most BBs are capped like 100-150k for cash bonus, the rest is paid in stock and you'd be locked in for a time period...

SO lmaoo if anything, going to a MM after a 3rd year can be advantageous since a MM firm like HW/Houlihan that is privately traded and didnt need TARP money (so there is less regulation) will actually not only pay you just as much or more $ (yes gasp/shock that MMs today are paying more than BBs often times post-lehman because they dont have rogue traders or insane losses from prop-trading or huge ridiculous overheads), but all in cash. this is such a typical BB person hating on MM firm lol

oh also to point out, BofA, CS, Barclays, UBS (do they still have an IB team in US? lol), Citi ALL have cut employee headcount in the past 6 months by the thousands (only one that has been growing really in Wells Fargo-props to them), some by the 10 thousands since summer alone...so again, being at a top MM also can allow for better job security. so dont condescendingly make it seem like the move from a BB to a MM is being demoted when this arguement shows that it could be a step up if you're a long term banker.....but sure if you want to do 2 and out to PE than yes BBs generally will have the leg up. im sure compbanker would like this post specifically as well ;)

How is he being condescending at all? I think we would all agree that at a BB, there is a great deal more prestige and opportunities to work on mega-cap transactions which brings in large fees that aren't as feasible at a middle-market. Seems like WSO has had a giant chip on its shoulder lately about how mid-market banks and Top 50 schools are just as good as Goldman and Harvard. Not that prestige is the end all/be all, but you guys are doing a huge disservice to potential candidates by making it seem like there isn't a massive bias in the industry (and for your career progression) to name-brand firms.

As an example, in another post I wrote how it's unreasonable to believe that MM IB firms will get the same exits to top mid-market PE shops as the top bulge brackets, and got negative points and refutations. As someone who works as an analyst in banking and seen opportunities be pre-selected for kids with gold-plated names, it's incredibly frustrating to see naive posts from college seniors about how "It's all about the interview, not where you're from" for opportunities, because you're not getting an interview without the right pedigree to most places

Dec 31, 1969
wso_user:
AnalystMonkey2769:
mountainvalley:

From what I've seen - the opposite is more common: BB -> MM. A lot of BB guys after the Analyst 3 or Associate years get tired of the hours and move on to a smaller shop where they get promote to VP/ED with perhaps less prestige, less opportunity for making the huge bonuses of BBs, but much better work-life balance.

i mean sure less prestige okay, but last time i checked most BBs are capped like 100-150k for cash bonus, the rest is paid in stock and you'd be locked in for a time period...

SO lmaoo if anything, going to a MM after a 3rd year can be advantageous since a MM firm like HW/Houlihan that is privately traded and didnt need TARP money (so there is less regulation) will actually not only pay you just as much or more $ (yes gasp/shock that MMs today are paying more than BBs often times post-lehman because they dont have rogue traders or insane losses from prop-trading or huge ridiculous overheads), but all in cash. this is such a typical BB person hating on MM firm lol

oh also to point out, BofA, CS, Barclays, UBS (do they still have an IB team in US? lol), Citi ALL have cut employee headcount in the past 6 months by the thousands (only one that has been growing really in Wells Fargo-props to them), some by the 10 thousands since summer alone...so again, being at a top MM also can allow for better job security. so dont condescendingly make it seem like the move from a BB to a MM is being demoted when this arguement shows that it could be a step up if you're a long term banker.....but sure if you want to do 2 and out to PE than yes BBs generally will have the leg up. im sure compbanker would like this post specifically as well ;)

How is he being condescending at all? I think we would all agree that at a BB, there is a great deal more prestige and opportunities to work on mega-cap transactions which brings in large fees that aren't as feasible at a middle-market. Seems like WSO has had a giant chip on its shoulder lately about how mid-market banks and Top 50 schools are just as good as Goldman and Harvard. Not that prestige is the end all/be all, but you guys are doing a huge disservice to potential candidates by making it seem like there isn't a massive bias in the industry (and for your career progression) to name-brand firms.

As an example, in another post I wrote how it's unreasonable to believe that MM IB firms will get the same exits to top mid-market PE shops as the top bulge brackets, and got negative points and refutations. As someone who works as an analyst in banking and seen opportunities be pre-selected for kids with gold-plated names, it's incredibly frustrating to see naive posts from college seniors about how "It's all about the interview, not where you're from" for opportunities, because you're not getting an interview without the right pedigree to most places

+1. Well said, and I think I agreed with you in the other thread regarding top BBs placing into better/more MM shops then MM IB firms.

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

Give UBS some credit where it's due. http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2013/09/30/mergers-hol...

Ranked #6 up to this point in the league tables

Float like a butterfly, sting like the bee.

Dec 31, 1969

true dat

I don't throw darts at a board. I bet on sure things. Read Sun-tzu, The Art of War. Every battle is won before it is ever fought- GG

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

HW is a pitchbook mill .... or so pe firms claim.

Dec 31, 1969

Since BB pe recruitin happens mostly in your first year, how does this affect the timeline for laterals? Would you have to stay an extra year assuming you come in as a second year?

Dec 31, 1969

+1 because when PE firms go to get investors and said investors look at who works there they will ALWAYS be happier seeing Harvard, Harvard, Penn, Harvard, Stanford...etc. instead of Penn State, South Harmon Institute of Technology, UC Riverside..etc. If you think I am wrong... go to EVERY PE website and see if A) they have a "team" page and B) if it lists the pedigree..Ya its unfair and are they missing potentially better\smarter candidates... But at the end of the day... You can teach someone to model and edit fonts, commas, color palettes... you can't change your diploma..

Same concept for all of those that played high school sports and were "really good but an inch too short".. You can teach skills but you can't give tools... Which is why the 6'5" receiver goes D1 10/10 times

Dec 31, 1969

HL, Jefferies, and HW all place well, albeit into different spaces. I know many SA alum who also have placed fine. These are five very different firms, and it all depends on where you are now and what you want.

Dec 31, 1969

Want to do MM PE but I feel that I am at a disadvantage coming from a MM shop compared to BB and Elite Boutiques.

Dec 31, 1969

Again, it still depends. You'll probably always be at a slight disadvantage but the question is still, what kind of MM? How big is the disadvantage where you want to play (lower MM is very different from UMM)? Is it big enough to justify the fact that you're likely going to lose a year when you lateral? If you're diligent and start early it's (relatively) likely you'll make it to PE--it's just that you won't necessarily end up in as large or prestigious a fund.

edit: I don't mean to sound like I have answers when I don't; I'm struggling with similar thoughts. But if the goal is just to get to PE, you're not necessarily at an advantage just coming from the BB. The huge differentiation occurs in the size of fund and name brand associated with you thereafter. This is coming from people I've spoken with on the buyside, so I trust it more than I would just based on my own intuitions.

Dec 31, 1969

I disagree--I see many analysts from MM firms in funds of that size. Perhaps we are just looking at different firms. We can PM for further details but basically, I think this is the real test: where have the guys from your firm gone? Do they consistently place well, into jobs you'd want? If not, then lateral. Otherwise, it's not a long shot.

Dec 31, 1969

For what it's worth, I'm at a similar bank in NY and experiencing the same difficulties. I think my decent transaction experience and good undergrad got me in the room at some good MM shops. But all of those firms have only BB/EB associates, and everyone I'm competing against/meet in the interview works at a BB/EB. Definitely thinking of lateraling myself, as one year extra in IB at a BB/EB sounds better than staying at a MM IB for a lot longer than that.

Dec 31, 1969

It'll be tough right now due to the market, but I've seen both happen during my three years...

When i was at Morgan, two guys lateraled over, both from "no-name" banks Dresdner Klein/Wasserstein and one from Miller Buckfire and they started after their first year and were pushed back to first years.

But a guy from USC/Piper got a pure lateral to the Tech Group, but I think he was giving some "favors"

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Dec 31, 1969

As for waiting until associate, i think you would have to argue for an associate to associate lateral when markets are good, right now they can pull laid off bankers and are still pushing people back.

You also have an influx of 2+2+2, 3+2+2, etc people coming out of bschool and aren't able to land new PE/HF jobs and they're also crowding the market.

I think if you can make the move now, do so.

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Dec 31, 1969

definitely possible. seen Jefferies to Greenhill and haver heard of others. i don't think the associate tag will hurt. also, it's not like analysts are the only people who switch banks. when and md goes from one shop to another it's essentially the same thing.

"Ride your bike. Drink good beer."
- Fat Tire Amber Ale

Dec 31, 1969

what about from lesser known regional places? ie southern mm bank to elite boutique/bb, or shoot more for a top mm firm after a year or two?

Dec 31, 1969

curious how ppl go about finding the lateral opportunities (i would assume through headhunters-- hpw did ppl find these headhunters..

IVY for Life

Dec 31, 1969

Lateral as early as possible in your career. It will help for buy side options as well as business school if you are interested.

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Dec 31, 1969

If it's one of the three "MM" banks you mentioned, then deal flow should be ok if you are in one of the stronger groups. For associates, we receive phone calls from headhunters about positions at other banks. I don't know whether this applies for analysts.

I know of another guy who lateraled from a much weaker MM but moved over to a BB because he happened to be on the other side of the deal with that BB, and the VP of that BB was so impressed with his work that they made him an offer.

Dec 31, 1969

I am afraid I'm just going to be a pitch monkey...should I try to make/find contacts at other BB's to increase my chances...any advice would be great. Thanks!

Dec 31, 1969

How does sometone stand out like that? usually its a team working on a book not one person

Dec 31, 1969

Bear and DB are most DEFINITELY not MM banks. Maybe on the lower end of the BB, but 100% not MM. You don't put Bear Stearns and Piper Jaffries together.

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

hmmm Piper Jaffray or Jeffries? Or did they merge?

Dec 31, 1969

since when are CS and DB "MM" banks? also, what office are you in? the deal flow is going to be decidedly lower if you're outside NYC. If you are in NYC, how can you possibly know what group you're in at this point? My advice - just concentrate on your position, make sure you do an outstanding job, and good things will happen

Dec 31, 1969

I said DB was a MM-BB, obviously not MM like Jefferies but not quite BB where you see the super big deals. Didn't say CS was a MM...definitely not one. From what I read and from people I've spoken to, good dealflow and brand name make such a big deal in exit ops...and I just t want to be proactive in my career and see all possible options. I obviously will try and do my best at my current employer...just looking for advice.

Dec 31, 1969

If you work hard and prove yourself, get top-level bonus, then you should be ok. A buddy of mine lateralled from a true MM to a BB. He was, however, pushed back one year, which I know does happen. If you're at BofA/DB/Bear, you probably would not be pushed back.

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

no i'm not from houston

Dec 31, 1969

First, don't worry so much about your "lack of deal flow" - you haven't even started yet! People love to spread rumors and talk about this crap but the reality is no way to tell until you start. And even if it's true, what could you do right now to change this?

Second, get a lot of good experience and earn top-bonus. Push to be put on good projects.

Sure, you can network and make contacts at the "real BBs"... that will help you get interviews there, but also ask yourself why you want to do this. If you really do have bad deal flow maybe it's worth it... but you will have to re-prove yourself to everyone at your new bank and your buy-side recruiting may be postponed if you do a lateral switch like this.

I'm not saying, "don't do this," just saying see where you stand halfway or so into your first year, how you're doing on the recruiting front etc. before you decide to make a move.

Dec 31, 1969

Hi,

Thanks for your comments. I noticed that everyone who commented mentioned getting a top notch bonus. A top level bonus is very beneficial personally, but it also holds crediblity when an analyst tries to lateral? When we interview, do we tell them we got the highest bonus for our class? Please explain why a big bonus helps in lateral moves.

Dec 31, 1969

So, if you got a middle of the road bonus two things will happen. One, they know that they don't have to pay you as much to get you away from your current firm. Two, they know you aren't that good. If you don't get top bonus at your current firm, why the hell would anyone want to hire you as a lateral. The bigger BB you are applying to has plenty of people who didn't get the top bonus, they don't need someone else who didn't.

No, they probably won't ask to see your pay stub to verify you got top bonus, but they could find out if they wanted to.

--There are stupid questions, so think first.

Dec 31, 1969

All recruiters and future employers will ask you if you got top bonus.

Needless to say, the only acceptable answer is "yes." Don't lie. If you didn't get top bonus at a "middle-market BB" you probably have no reason to be applying to a BB.

Top bonus shows them that you are good and that they are at least picking from the cream of the crop at your bank. Recruiters also ask this and filter resumes accordingly so it's really important.

Dec 31, 1969

You're a sophomore? You'll be in great shape for junior year BB recruitment if you do land a MM ibanking position.

Banking > VC > Tech PE; PM me if you would like any advice I'm happy to help

Dec 31, 1969

If you're a sophomore with good grades they will likely be all over you because you will have more banking experience than 95% of other applicants.

Dec 31, 1969
coupdetat:

Is it conceivable to intern this summer at a MM ibank then move next summer to a BB bank? Do you all think I'll get flak from the BB interviewers for this or will they discount my experience all together because its at a MM firm? Thanks in advance for the help!

Interned at a boutique/MM last summer, and was able to get into a BB this summer. As the previous poster mentioned, you will have more experience than 95% of the other sophomores, so it will definitely work in your favor. Feel free to PM me if you would like to discuss specifics.

Dec 31, 1969

what about doing an ibanking internship at a boutique/MM summer after jr yr and then looking for jobs in a BB after graduation. Wish I had done it last summer. Am I screwed?

Would I be better off doing operations or wealth management at a BB and trying to move up/over?

Dec 31, 1969

don't do ops unless you've specifically heard of that company promoting middle-office to front office..

Dec 31, 1969

What about wealth management?

Certain firms i'm guessing are easier to get promotions/transfers from other divisions.

Can anyone comment on how a lehman or UBS would compare to GS or MS or other firms in this situation, ie moving from ops or WM to IB.

Dec 31, 1969

Best to do ibanking at a MM and then move to a BB.

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

you should be networking regardless. all the time...

Dec 31, 1969

Curious as well. I'm at MM and several people in another division left for BBs, but I don't know HOW they did it. I'm not in any rush to leave (I like my job) but I am curious what the protocol is....

Get busy living

Dec 31, 1969

headhunters will call. also keep networking - groups have off-cycle positions that open up. you just need to have somebody on the inside tell you about it

Dec 31, 1969

Definitely possible. Reach out to alumni from your school or friends or send cold emails. They'll be able to tell you if their groups are hiring or if they've heard of anyone else hiring.

Dec 31, 1969

Saw 2 analysts go from Lincoln / Sagent level to GS/MS level recently. Believe they had to "re-start" as first year analysts though.

"They are all former investment bankers that were laid off in the economic collapse that Nancy Pelosi caused. They have no marketable skills, but by God they work hard."

Best Response
Dec 31, 1969

MM IB--->BB NY IBD Lateral??? (Originally Posted: 04/13/2014)

Been on here for a while and just wanted to thank everybody for the wealth of information this site provides. Anyway, im currently about to start a FT analyst program at a MM bank in the South(Charlotte/ATL/Houston) with mediocre deal flow in a generalist group. I know buy-side recruiting comes and goes fast, and my group will probably provide me little exit ops, so im trying to plan out my next move. Id like to move to a larger city(NY/Chicago) and give myself some more flexibility, so im guessing lateraling to a BB/elite boutique(if possible) should be my immediate focus.

Things im interested in-
-VC
-Corp Dev at somewhere like Facebook/Disney/ESPN
-Startups
-Possibly a HF

Things im not interested in-
-PE
-Business School
-Hopefully not getting "reset" as a first year analyst

How do I go about lateraling? Is it necessary for my goals? Will I have to start as a first year? Is BB NYC possible from a mediocre group in the south?

Thanks in advance guys.

Dec 31, 1969

it's definitely been done. i know people who've made the jump from strong regional banks to elite boutiques in nyc.

Dec 31, 1969

I'm assuming you're an analyst? So likely you have better work-life balance? If anything, stick it out until you go to B-school and then after that switch to the BB as an associate if you want to work at a BB in the end.

make it hard to spot the general by working like a soldier

Dec 31, 1969

Use your school network. BB's are usually pretty eager to pick up guys with summer experience in banking when full-time recruiting season comes around.

That said, it can't hurt to talk to as many people at BB's as possible while you're in the city.

Don't go all out and ask for jobs just yet, wait till you can get solid recs from your MM bank before you start doing that.

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

yes, most definitely. ANY IBD experience is great experience, especially if you go to a target. you will definitely get looks.

Dec 31, 1969

Did you get any tough technical questions?

The difference between successful people and others is largely a habit - a controlled habit of doing every task better, faster and more efficiently.

Dec 31, 1969

That's if BBs pick up recruiting. Recruiting was terrible Fall 2011 with most banks not showing up or taking very few people.

Dec 31, 1969

Does anyone else refer to PE firms in terms of MM and BB? The terms almost seem like a joke referring to firms that might be a couple or 3 hundred vs. banks employing thousands of people. I guess they'd still apply in terms of capitalization and the size of the deals...

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969

PE terminology isn't particularly refined; as such, you'll generally hear "Middle Market" or "Mega Fund" when referring to funds of various size.

Dec 31, 1969

Leaving the terminology aside, does anyone have a perspective on the original question?

Dec 31, 1969

Once you have ib expereince and a top mba under your belt, it is by no means impossible. It just comes down to your ability to parlay your experience at the mm into a bb offer. Very possible if you can communicate well..although not gonna be easy given the current situation

Dec 31, 1969

Absolutely possible. If you were an analyst for a couple years at an MM you'll be a top candidate for an associate position as an MBA student.

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CompBanker

CompBanker

Dec 31, 1969

If you will be an analyst starting in summer of 2009, I would venture to say it would be easier than before (2005-2007), assuming the market turns around in the next few years. My thinking is that the banks are cutting heads left and right, eventually they will need bodies, and need them fast. My two cents, although I could be totally off.

Dec 31, 1969

Wanna know something? Nothing is impossible.

Do what you want not what you can!

Dec 31, 1969
bossman:

Wanna know something? Nothing is impossible.

damn, that's deep

Dec 31, 1969

Unless you are in an industry group like media, industrial, o&g, real estate, etc. (or product suck as lev fin, fin sponr, M&A) in a BB, you are probably going to do deals that small some time in your 2 year career. This specifically applies to areas such as consumer, healthcare and tech

If you have good exp in deals that are ranging from 50-250 in M&A, you will do just fine. Just make sure you actually participated on the deal instead of just creating the book and do the mindless VDR manipulation. Understand what each deal's rationale is and be the one responsible for the model.

but to be honest, if you are from somewhere like harris, jef, i dont see why you would want to go to a BB unless you somehow get an interview with a great group.

Dec 31, 1969

Too wide a range of combos there. Tech at Blair is a top group that will place well already. Depending on the group, UBS and to a greater extent, HSBC aren't necessarily on the same tier as DB.

Guess it depends on why you are making the move. Are the exit opps not there at your current place?

Dec 31, 1969

DB/UBS M&A or FSLF would be better than any MM imo

Dec 31, 1969

For PE exit opps is there a significant difference between M&A and coverage?

Dec 31, 1969

Not sure how you concluded parity between Stifel, Blair and Piper

Dec 31, 1969

All three are decent MM banks. Don't over think it homie.

Dec 31, 1969

You will find it very difficult to move from MM to BB. What type of MM are you at currently? Are we talking one of the top shops in the class (i.e. Blair) or a no-name? Do you have connections at BBs?

Why do you want to move from MM to BB? What is your end goal?

Dec 31, 1969

I'm based in Toronto - one of the larger Canadian banks. Very few meaningful connections at BBs.

Main goal for moving is to give myself some career flexibility - although I do enjoy working in IB, I don't feel that it is realistic for me to lock into the career banker route when I'm only ~22 years old (no decent exits in Toronto/Canada).

Dec 31, 1969

If you are at one of the larger Canadian banks (i.e. BMO, RBS, CIBC), that is more or less BB in Canada, right? Why do you say no decent exits in Toronto? I know several PE, mezz and HFs out of there.

Dec 31, 1969

Yeah, would be considered "BB" in Canada. All the exits in Toronto have less potential upside than staying the banking route, partly why more juniors stick out the banking route and less MBAs are hired in associate roles.

Dec 31, 1969

Honestly, not too sure you want to in the current environment. The BB may demote you back to a "1st year," in which case you'll have your full 2 years ahead of you again. After one year of this job, that is pretty daunting.

However, if your mind is made up, it is possible. You'll have to network your way in and you better be able to show well after a year on the job. I certainly wouldn't place a high probability on it.

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CompBanker

CompBanker

Dec 31, 1969

Hey CompBanker,

Thanks for that. I did an internship, got an offer and signed early b/c I wasn't given much time to decide, and didn't want to gamble given how hard it is to get a FT position anywhere right now. Do you know if my chances improve at all if I target the smaller elite boutiques? (Lazard, Greenhill, Evercore etc.)

-Jimbo777

Dec 31, 1969

We have some 25-26 year old first years because of the aforementioned demotion (from banks such as HSBC, ABN AMRO, BNP Paribas, etc.) and also from demotions following an internal lateral after rising to an Associate in back-/middle-office.

Dec 31, 1969

if you work at Lazard, Greenhill, or Evercore, WHY would you want to lateral over to a BB???

you'll get get experience and can move onto PE from those banks, why stay an analyst?

Dec 31, 1969
ledger123:

if you work at Lazard, Greenhill, or Evercore, WHY would you want to lateral over to a BB???

you'll get get experience and can move onto PE from those banks, why stay an analyst?

He's saying maybe he wants to lateral into one of those places (instead of a BB), not from them.

Dec 31, 1969
Dec 31, 1969
  1. Yes, but most of the headhunters I have seen helping with banking recruiting are focused on boutiques/M&A shops. BBs, as you might imagine, are large enough to run their own recruiting processes and therefore don't use headhunters as much (or at all... but I'm not 100% on that). So yes, there are recruiters out there, especially for boutiques.
  2. It's your career -- if you see a spot open, go for it. I know people who lateraled to other banks within the first month of work, and certainly within the first year.
  3. I know of several who have made this move after the first year. Many BBs have 1st years who drop out, take immediate starts, etc. There are often holes in classes that need filling by the 2nd and certainly by the 3rd year of any given analyst class.
Dec 31, 1969

U can make the move before u finish ur first year too. Network and play the lack of fit card. Nobody can argue

Dec 31, 1969
Socal:

U can make the move before u finish ur first year too. Network and play the lack of fit card. Nobody can argue

Are you speaking from experience? If so could you elaborate a bit on the lack of fit card and the response you got? I'm shopping around right now to lateral from my shop after my first year.

Dec 31, 1969

I wouldn't think you need to worry too much about explaining your move. Obviously the firm you're interviewing for is an upgrade in prestige/quality of experience, so the desire to move there is self explanatory.

Dec 31, 1969

bb banks won't push back much BC they will view it as u trying to trade up from a mm to bb. By lack of fit I simply mean describe the culture of ur old firm and why it's not a good match for u given (blank). They know u would rather work at a bb so it won't be too hard

Dec 31, 1969

Yes, simply put, it's all about connections.

Dec 31, 1969

It's all about your rolodex, hustle hard, anything is possible. Coming from a non-target, you can't afford to mess up on anything, including technicals, know them thoroughly - do not memorize them. Understand them. Keep a tab of deal flow & be able to articulate why certain transactions are going on, know the multiples.

There's nothing wrong with MM. Places like Piper Jaffray & Jefferies have great deal flow, pay well, and provide you with great career/exit opportunities. Understand the differences, do some research on MM vs. BB IB.

Junior Bankers (Analysts & Associates) work the most, once you get to VP level, your hours aren't as reckless. If you start as an Analyst, it can take you around 5-7 years to get to VP. Analyst (2-3 Years), Associate (3+ Years).

AgainstAllOdds

Dec 31, 1969

Any textbooks/books you'd recommend me buying besides the Rosenbaum one (already getting it)? Or any particular concepts/computer programs of which I should study particularly hard?

We spend a lot of time making the unimportant measurable while the important remains immeasurable

Dec 31, 1969

Honestly just network, get good grades, and get good internships. Everything else will fall in place. Dont forget to have fun because college goes by in a blink of an eye.

Dec 31, 1969