Tech M&A Franchise - Lazard vs Moelis vs Evercore

n1x's picture
Rank: Monkey | banana points 48

Hi all,

fortunate to receive offers from Moelis tech group in Palo Alto, Lazard tech group in SF, and Evercore tech group (also in SF). I have my own thoughts on each offer but curious to hear what you all think. Any current information/insights on dealflow, exit opps, culture, etc would be really helpful as I evaluate these offers.

Thanks very much

Comments (11)

Oct 6, 2014

Isn't EVR in Menlo?

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Oct 6, 2014

yeah they are..didnt proofread my post so my apologies. Any thoughts / insights would be appreciated, thanks

Oct 6, 2014

In terms of ranking, tough to say, but I'd probably rank Lazard as first and then a toss-up between Moelis and Evercore. Lazard SF has built up a solid reputation and has existed for quite some time now, and their deal flow isn't too bad. They aren't on a lot of deals, but they do have some noteworthy big-pocketed clients in the tech industry, so when they do do a deal it's normally a big one. They are sort of like Allen and co in that sense.

Moelis and Evercore just started out and no one really knows them in the tech-scene. From those two, I'd pick the one where you think you fit in more or has better culture/people. In terms of deal-flow, since they are really early-on, it is quite low. I don't see how they will compete against the likes of Qatalyst, GS, and MS whom already dominate the tech M&A space. I also heard Moelis Palo Alto is a sweat-shop, so Evercore may have the slight edge.

I'd take Lazard over either those two though.

    • 2
Oct 8, 2014

Lazard Tech is probably the best choice. They have done some interesting deals over the past year including Google/Nest and Google/Novartis Smart Lens technology.

Moelis and Evercore are both great brand names but extremely small shops.

Oct 15, 2014

Actually, the healthcare group did the Google/Novartis transaction.

Oct 8, 2014

Despite their awesome brand names, these aren't the strongest brands if you're looking to do tech. I would try to leverage the offers into GS/MS/JPM/CS. If you're set on taking one, go Lazard. Evercore is very sub-par out there, and Moelis is pretty unknown in the tech space.

Best Response
Oct 15, 2014

Thanks for the input guys. I'll add a little bit more information that I learned through the interview/sell process about each of these two offices/franchises in case anyone out there is looking for specific & recent information

Lazard:
- Great views of the SF bay from the office and since they have more office space than needed, a few lucky associates have gotten offices with wonderful views as well. (Lease expires in two years and I was told they are going to move from embarcadero center)
- SF office split between healthcare group and Tech group. Tech group has better views.
- Tech group led by 3 MDs, one of which is global head of tech franchise and other two are a little more junior...All 3 of the MDs struck me as nice people
- Focus historically has been on the large cap tech firms...Strong relationships with all the major tech players (Microsoft, HP, IBM, eBay, etc)....strongest relationship has always been with Google where Lazard handles pretty much all of the pure M&A / complicated transactions that they choose to outsource to banks
- These relationships are leveraged to help them win sell-side mandates as the large tech guys are the most active buyers
- Recent push in last few years to grow / develop relationships with more up and coming tech firms..
- I am really interested in digital media so I had asked them about that...They do a bunch of work with Pandora & now Spotify (where they leverage global brand etc..)

Moelis:
- Office in Palo Alto, a little smaller than Lazard...12-15 guys
- Run by two MDs....Office head (Senior MD) is a communications banker so he feeds the office with a lot of deals in that sector. Other MD is an internet/digital media banker...Thus most of there work falls within these two buckets
- No VPs at all in the office...was a big selling point they were making, basically that as an associate you are 100% running the process because there are no VPs in front of you. There is a current Sr Associate who is set to be promoted in March 2014 however
- Asked office head about Moelis' bad reputation in terms of culture/hours..He agreed with me in that Moelis does that that reputation but it is a result of the LA office...firm is aware and taking steps to reduce that (allegedly)...for what its worth I believe him when he said that the office has a better culture
- Tend to do more MM stuff...dont chase large cap tech stuff because most of them have own corp dev teams and since Moelis is small group, they dont have resources to be out pitching all the time..
- They like deals where their advice is more valued...AKA smaller firms going through M&A process for first time
- IMPORTANT: Lease expires in November-ish of 2015...Office head said with certainty that they are going to be moving to SF when lease expires...looking for office space in a cool district (aka not embarcadero where all other banks are)...this was important to me in terms of commuting, lifestyle etc..

For what its worth, everyone I met at both offices seemed really nice. I'll update if I remember anything else that is important. Otherwise happy to discuss further if people have specific questions.. Hope this was at least somewhat helpful

    • 3
Oct 16, 2014

good stuff. which firm are you leaning on joining? Sounds like its between LAZ or Moelis and a debate between Large Cap M&A or MM stuff.

Oct 15, 2014

you should be more focused on deal flow and types of deals instead of how nice the office looks.

    • 2
Oct 16, 2014
wallstreet101:

you should be more focused on deal flow and types of deals instead of how nice the office looks.

Disagree. As long as both firms do good deals and provide you good experience, working in a nice and friendly environmental helps to keep up your morale and stamina and increase your ability to do a good job and been appreciated.

I'm grateful that I have two middle fingers, I only wish I had more.

Apr 19, 2018

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