RBC NYC M&A vs. Moelis SF Generalist

I am now trying to lateral after 1 year of IB related experience. My next 2-year goal would be PE or HF. How would you guys choose given those two options? Consensus might be Moelis SF since it's an EB, but my thought is that RBC isn't bad because it's on their M&A team in New York, and I can probably go to SF from New York, but not as easy the other way around. I don't mind lateraling to another better bank from RBC if RBC can't give me good exits.

You guys might be thinking I am leaning towards RBC, but still, I want to know how would you guys think.

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Comments (31)

Feb 19, 2018 - 2:22am

Moelis will give you much better exit ops. RBC is a great BB but unfortunately if your goal is PE or HF, you're going to have to go through prestige hoe headhunters. RBC is also seen as a more balance sheet heavy bank so they may play lighter advisory roles on transactions.

If you want to recruit for NY, just make it clear to the HHs and book flights to get out here the moment you hear interviews have kicked off.

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Best Response
Feb 19, 2018 - 9:55am
  1. Are these the only two options you have?

  2. You mention lateraling out of RBC if you don't end up liking it...
    So you'll have been at 3 IBs in the span of 3 years. That's no bueno and shows very poorly actually.

  3. Moelis SF is a small office, but active, whereas RBC NYC is obviously RBC NYC. They will have very different office feels and you will have very different responsibilities at each place. I would say that you would likely really need to hit the ground running if you end up joining Moelis SF because since it's a small office and they have a lateral hiring need, you're going to be heavily relied upon.

  4. Where are you right now?

  5. What industry do you want to go into?

  6. Moelis name > RBC name

Feb 19, 2018 - 11:07pm
  1. Yea, lateral process is very unstructured and not many banks recruit.
  2. My current job is valuation and not IB, and I have been here for 1 year, Would you still think switching to another bank after RBC would look poorly?
  3. NYC
  4. I would prefer TMT for now, so moelis looks like a good fit, but I haven't really done any deals in this space, so maybe being at RBC M&A would give me more exposure to everything and I can decide later
Feb 19, 2018 - 11:23pm

You will have a very slim chance of exiting to PE/HF out of RBC NYC (or RBC anywhere). Moelis sends tons of analysts to buyside, but beware that it is the biggest sweatshop on the street next to Lazard, Qatalyst, and a few specific groups within other firms.

If I were hiring at a PE firm, one of the first places I would look would be Moelis.

Feb 20, 2018 - 11:05am

Why are you making this harder for yourself? Moelis SF is the top choice here.

Valuation shop -> RBC NYC -> Another bank

...All within 3 years. That's a lot of hopping around, and it usually takes several months to even establish yourself in a new place. Hopping to a new place every year is not a good look. You'll be a strange candidate and assuming headhunters can even keep up with your new work emails, they'll view you as a "nontraditional" candidate.

You're also assuming you'll be able to find any GOOD lateral positions after 1 year at RBC.

If I was in this situation, I would pick Moelis SF, never look back, and crush it there for 1-2 years.

Feb 20, 2018 - 11:54am

I would look to see if Moelis SF is as established as Moelis LA/Moelis NY. Most of Moelis' reputation as a top-placement shop really stems from the aforementioned two. From what I know, Moelis Tech M&A is not really as established as its other BB/EB competitors in the space, although it has been hiring and beginning to show presence in the space (it is also an advisor on the recent Broadcom-Qualcomm deal). You should check if the placement and deal flow are as good as the Moelis reputation. To save you the work, I did hear the work hours are on par with the Moelis name.

Apr 17, 2018 - 11:21pm

Heard SF offices exit opps are on par with the LA office as of recently, which is amazing placement into any MF PE/HF on the westcoast.

For the same reason, I wouldnt recommending going to Moelis NYC though as they have done poorly in terms of PE exits.

Apr 18, 2018 - 1:59am

From my personal experience, Moelis SF will give you interviews at all the Megafund shops on the westcoast. It's up to you to really do well and get the PE offers. I believe the office moved to SF city from Palo Alto and heard they are doing great in terms of deal flow...

However, if you are set on aiming for MF PE shops on the eastcoast it would be hard to transition. Even then RBC name is non BB and it will be hard sell to go to a really great PE/HF, although there are outliers. It might be best to go with Moelis then lateral to a reputable bank on the eastcoast.

Sep 22, 2018 - 7:58pm

Nice! Thanks for coming back here for an update. Im looking to lateral myself. Any tips on how you got there and will RBC be hiring FT for their M&A group? I have a connect there but he kinda flaked on me :( Thanks in advance!

Jul 13, 2018 - 10:21am

It's a new office, so maybe the class that just left placed well, but I went to school out there and never heard of it being on par with LA. And haven't come across a person from that office in PE.

Jul 16, 2018 - 3:15am

Kid went to Wharton and I couldnt offer any insights because i have not heard much. Do they place jsut as well as LA if they work on big deals like Broadcomm, and what does "conjunction" mean. If conjunction means LA does all the model and SF does industry updates, LA kids will have much more to talk about during the interviews

Sep 22, 2018 - 3:05am

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