TAS (Due diligence) to top 25 MBA "enough" for PE?

Soros's picture
Rank: Senior Baboon | 210

I went to a pretty bad school academically (outside of top 100) for undergrad and Macc and I've been in big 4 audit for 2 years, looking to move to TAS soon. If I were to do 2-3 years of big 4 TAS, then did a top 20 MBA (closer to the 20th), would I be considered to have an appropriate background for a post MBA PE associate? This would put me at around 31 years old after 2 years of TAS and 2 years of MBA.

Comments (16)

Nov 4, 2014

I don't think so. I think you need actual deal experience. I would look to try to get into IB versus TAS.

Nov 5, 2014

Even for smaller mid-market PE firms? I've heard TAS is not unheard of to go to PE, so I'm a little surprised. What would be the best exit after TAS then? DD for MM PE firms?

Nov 5, 2014
Soros:

Even for smaller mid-market PE firms? I've heard TAS is not unheard of to go to PE, so I'm a little surprised. What would be the best exit after TAS then? DD for MM PE firms?

It happens when there are hiring squeezes (e.g. mid-2000s). I know a few TAS guys from KPMG and PwC that were picked off by upper MM PE funds. That is certainly the exception though.

While it isn't impossible, it will be incredibly difficult.

Nov 5, 2014
Bullet-Tooth Tony:
Soros:

Even for smaller mid-market PE firms? I've heard TAS is not unheard of to go to PE, so I'm a little surprised. What would be the best exit after TAS then? DD for MM PE firms?

It happens when there are hiring squeezes (e.g. mid-2000s). I know a few TAS guys from KPMG and PwC that were picked off by upper MM PE funds. That is certainly the exception though.

While it isn't impossible, it will be incredibly difficult.

Correct, it happens, but the ones I've heard of go TAS -> PE, not TAS->MBA->PE

Nov 5, 2014

Why are you only pursuing 20ish ranked schools?

Nov 5, 2014

Unless you're super lucky (i.e. there's an alum of your MBA at a small fund off the beaten path who pulls for you), I don't see it. Why do you get the job versus someone who has PE experience and went to an M7 MBA? Getting a post-MBA PE job can be pretty tough even for people with much more relevant experience.

Nov 5, 2014

Also, if your goal is PE, why not look at IB as well as TAS? Someone else asked that earlier in the thread too.

Nov 5, 2014

I just don't think it is likely, and my questions would really be resolved if I were to get into IB. I'm applying and networking but I'm not counting on it.

Nov 5, 2014

Got it - good luck!

Nov 6, 2014

Suppose I did a couple years of due diligence within a PE firm, after doing TAS but before an MBA - would this be considered deal experience? I suppose I could make the switch from TAS to investment banking as well, right? 2 years of big 4 audit plus ~2 years of TAS, would that put me at an associate or would I have to start as an analyst?

Nov 6, 2014

Most members of the investment team conduct due diligence and those come from banking or consulting for the most part. Few PE shops have internal people assigned to just due diligence. They usually bring in Big 4 or large regional consulting firms to help with that (QofE, working capital analysis, etc.).

Nov 6, 2014
Bullet-Tooth Tony:

Most members of the investment team conduct due diligence and those come from banking or consulting for the most part. Few PE shops have internal people assigned to just due diligence. They usually bring in Big 4 or large regional consulting firms to help with that (QofE, working capital analysis, etc.).

This is correct. TAS is doing the due diligence that the PE firms aren't doing internally.

Nov 6, 2014
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