Salary Negotiation - PE - Switzerland

Hi guys,

Just created this account to remain anonymous.

I recently graduated from a target in UK and wanted to return home (Switzerland). I have been networking ferociously here to break into IB or PE. After a life draining process, I have been offered an analyst position at a PE firm here. They usually take 3-7 analysts each year and have a quite dedicated set up. Its a 24 months contract. My first year will be in Switzerland and second, in one of the Nordic countries.

However, the contract they offered me is quite unique, for me per se; and I need people with more knowledge to help me make sense of it. They are paying me AFTER TAX in the range of $80K-$95K, out of which $55K-$65K will be paid out in cash. They will be using the remaining amount to give me accommodation in a 5-star hotel or the company provided housing (which will be equivalent to a 5-star hotel) for the next 2 year. Lastly, there won't be any bonus for the first 2 years and no increase in base salary in year 2.

In short; total comp (AFTER TAX)- $80K-$95K; which will broken down into:
Cash: $55K-$65K,
Accommodation: $25K-$35K

Side Notes:
(1) I was born and raised in a different city compared to the office
(2) Hours are similar/ same as your typical BB
(3) I really like the culture and got along with everyone I met
(4) 60-70% analysts are asked to stay on after 2 years

In general, what do you think?

Even though, I am not planning on moving to NY/ London in near future, how would you compare the comp package only? (excluding the prestige, experience, exits etc)

Comments (2)

Sep 24, 2016 - 6:04am

To me, as someone from one of the Nordic countries and currently living in Switzerland, it doesnt sound like a good deal from a compensation perspective. First, they are basically "making" you spend $25-35k a year on housing, which even for Switzerland is quiet a bit if you are single and a recent university grad and its a lot for one of the Nordic countries (I grew up in one of them and lived in a different one). Secondly, as a comparison, people who join big4 audit start at CHF85k in Switzerland with overtime pay, pension, fewer hours (maybe half of BB) and no restriction on what they have to spend their money on (in your case 25-35k on housing). Thirdly, the tax on $55-65k income in Switzerland is going to be minimal anyway so that seems like a moot point.

Also, as far as I know, 3rd year analysts at one of the BB in Zurich have base salaries of around CHF140k + bonus. Your total compensation will still be 80-95k after two years. Doesnt seem right to me.

Anyway, I am only speaking from a compensation perspective and obviously the experience you may get is a different story.

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