Top Tech Groups - SF

What are everyone's thoughts on the top tech groups? I'm a freshman and trying to learn more about the landscape of the industry in the Bay Area. The info on the forum seems a little out of date but based on the research I have done already it appears that GS, MS, Q, and EVR are the top groups in terms of deal flow, culture, and exits. How would firms like Citi, BofA, CS, LAZ, PWP, JEF, RBC measure up? Would appreciate any further insights! Thanks!

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Comments (91)

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Nov 26, 2021 - 4:27pm

Citi tech? I'm sorry I can't remember the last time I saw them on an important S-1 or worked across from them in an M&A

also, SPAC quality as of late is absolute shit. Shell cos on the brink of returning capital that will merge with any shit company to avoid it

In tech its

GS/MS/Q (Q being better at M&A but obviously no equity)

JPM

the rest

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Nov 26, 2021 - 11:27pm

Bro why are you just spamming the same thing over and over again?

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May 24, 2020 - 4:08pm

My friends tell me RBC and Citi are lifestyle banks.

Throw STRH and all tech boutiques besides the elites and Qatalyst in the same bucket (USA, GCA, FTP (i'm sorry but I'm not on duty at the time of this posting), Code, Merrimac, Intrepid, Catapult, Singrando and Terratorn Advisors)

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
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  • 1
May 25, 2020 - 3:53am

I mean that it's a chill bank in terms of lifetsyle. Tgat's what I've heard at least....

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
Most Helpful
  • Associate 1 in IB-M&A
May 24, 2020 - 4:10pm

Evercore is not in the same bucket as GS, MS, and Q. Those 3 tend to win pretty much all the major mandates

  • Intern in IB-M&A
May 24, 2020 - 10:24pm

Agreed considering how long GS/MS/Q have been dominating the tech landscape as well as their client relationships.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
May 24, 2020 - 4:25pm

JPM has been crushing it for the last couple years tho. Wonder if JPM would ever reach the top in the near future.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
May 24, 2020 - 4:51pm

Think recently JPM has been on par or possibly even better in terms of dealflow than MS Menlo. Still not the same in terms of exits and selectivity/prestige but maybe slowly moving in that direction if they keep improving.

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
May 24, 2020 - 6:32pm

The issue with JPM SF is that the coverage team does almost no modelling/execution so they struggle to exit into PE. They do really well with other tech roles though.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
May 24, 2020 - 8:53pm

How is this much different from MS Menlo where there is a separate m&a and coverage group? Assume most of the execution is done through the m&a group there also? Could be wrong but just curious what the main difference is that makes MS Menlo so much better at the coverage level for juniors.

Aug 3, 2020 - 1:10am

I've heard of coverage groups being less modelling intensive but no modelling/execution? What type of work do they typically do at JPM SF then?

Array

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
May 24, 2020 - 7:33pm

FTP is a specialist (fintech), and DBO is a generalist, so those two are quite different themselves. But both well-respected around here. I'd give slight edge to DBO. Surprised LionTree hasn't been mentioned in this thread though. Another fantastic boutique in SF.

May 25, 2020 - 2:14am

LT is on a whole other level. They do a fantastic job and are relaly not even a boutique like USA or Code or FTP.

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
  • 1
May 25, 2020 - 2:13am

Are you inviting me to post here or something? FTP does well only in FinTech and has been on $bn deals. Bankers here work hardcore to prove to copmanies they take on that they did not make the wrong decision to hire a boutique...

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
  • 1
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
May 24, 2020 - 9:55pm

Highest emphasis on exits and considers dealflow:
GS/Q/MS
JP/EVR/LAZ
CS/BofA/CVP/MoCo
Citi/PWP/Barclays/JEF
DB/UBS/GH/Gugg/RBC

All are great places and keep in mind that this ranking is really not that indicative of the overall quality of the group. PWP SF for example doesn't do that many deals but you'll still get better looks there for PE than at DB which actually has decent deal flow.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
May 24, 2020 - 10:25pm

do you think you will get good looks to exit to top growth and VC shops from the second tier of banks from your grouping? Or are those mostly for GS/MS/Q

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
May 24, 2020 - 10:37pm

Yes, I actually know a few EVR analysts that have exited to VC in the past few classes. Lazard has placed recent analysts at great growth funds (CVC). Can't speak to JPM, but I know that EVR and LAZ are going to give you great opps to growth and VC if you're interested.

May 25, 2020 - 3:36am

I heard UBS isn't that bad since they pretty much do work for sponsors in the software space.

Array

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
May 25, 2020 - 1:57pm

I've heard UBS and DB compete better in tech than overall. Are you sure they're bottom tier on their own or should they be in the second-to-last tier with the others?

May 25, 2020 - 4:37pm

Kindly exclude FTP as they are too niche. If the thread was top fintech groups -sf, then FTP would be #1 hands and legs down

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
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  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
May 26, 2020 - 5:24am

Won't play the ranking game but LionTree and DBO Partners are very well-regarded in SF. Strong deal flow, EB-type comp, open door policy, and smart people. Not too familiar with FT Partners since my group doesn't really compete with them.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
May 26, 2020 - 2:36am

What do some of the most prestigious / competitive exits include for these groups? Based on this thread, would it be safe to say that most MF PE exits are taken by GS, MS, and Q analysts? Where do these other firms place in terms of GE, VC, and PE? Is PE even that popular or do most top analysts prefer VC?

  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
May 26, 2020 - 5:50pm

Tech PE guy in the Bay here. My perspective is based on who we see and like to see when our associate hiring cycle comes around, which I am guessing is what you guys care about. Not necessarily talking about deal flow.

GS/MS/Q are "top", sure, but with caveats. Everyone sort of hates working with GS, they get mandated on a ton of sell sides so we have to play nice with them for deal flow. We'd obviously take their analysts because they get good experience. We don't see a lot of Q guys during recruiting surprisingly. A lot of people stay there (its a good gig) and a lot go to Sand Hill Road if they do leave. It's a smaller shop too.

Evercore/JPM/Moelis (yep) are pretty much in line in my book for hiring purposes. Anyone saying Evercore isn't as good for placing on here is dead wrong. We love working with them and love scooping up their analysts. (Also, look at the first major "tech"-ish post-COVID deal with Silverlake/Apollo/Expedia. Who was advising on that? Evercore/GS on the sponsors and JPM/Moelis for Expedia.)

Other bulges, etc. after that. All are pretty good and would merit a look.

FTP murders it in fintech so not sure why they are getting flack. They are a major part of the deal flow in that sector but only that sector (dont cover anything else) so their guys place well in fintech in the Bay (think like an FTV type place)

Some other boutiques like DBO/Vaquero were seeing good deal flow in the LMM/MM before COVID, but we don't really hire out of them because their deals weren't our spec so we don't have real relationships.

EDIT: Forgot PJT. don't see a ton of their stuff out here, but have had great experiences working with them and would for sure interview their analysts

EDIT EDIT: Confused how this is so controversial. Because I said we like to hire Evercore and that FTP is really strong in their core competency? Will refrain from future perspective...I only speak from the lens of someone above the associate role at one PE shop in the Bay. Other shops could have different views on who they like to hire from. (Just go to their websites to see.)

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
May 26, 2020 - 7:40pm

Why is ft partners such a contentious topic on this forum? Seems like people are always trying to find a way to shit on them or suck them off. No in between

  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
May 26, 2020 - 7:43pm

My best guess is its just the difference between covering fintech and not covering fintech. If you don't cover fintech they are a no name firm. If you do cover it, they are a very important name. Analysts get interviews from PE shops covering fintech.

And to be clear...I don't necessary "like" them as someone has accused me of being an FTP troll. Lol. They barely existed when I was an analyst. They can be slippery. Same as GS and to an extent all bankers, you have to play nice in the sandbox if you want to see their deal flow.

Done commenting because I am triggering Gen Z now.

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
May 26, 2020 - 8:05pm

Thanks so much for the detailed write-up, it is really helpful to see things from the other side.

That's an interesting point on Q, it seems that analysts are more prone to going VC or staying at the firm (which admittedly is a bit difficult to draw conclusions from considering just how small the classes are). Would you say this is a function of their analysts choosing to not go into traditional PE, or do firms such as yours not consider their analysts when/if they do recruit?

  • Prospect in IB - Cov
May 26, 2020 - 8:07pm

Appreciate the insight you've provided. How do you view strong MM players in this space (Jefferies, WB, etc.)? Do you ever interview candidates from these shops?

May 27, 2020 - 6:10pm

FTP has clients for years and has a backlog of deals that they are constantly trying to execute. That is why they churn out deals so much

What do you mean they place well in FinTech in the Bay? Which shops have they gone to recentyl that makes you think thtat/?

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
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  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
May 28, 2020 - 3:44am

From a quick Linkedin search: Accel, CVC Growth, Parthenon, Vista, TCV, Spectrum, B Capital, Carrick

  • Intern in IB - Gen
May 28, 2020 - 9:05am

Why are you people giving this guy monkey shit?

Even if you don't agree with him he's a certified pro and knows way more about the topic than you do.

Why discourage him from giving his opinions in the future? Way better than hearing prospects and interns argue about shit they know nothing about.

May 28, 2020 - 3:06pm

Thanks for standing up for me,!

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
  • 1
  • Intern in IB - Cov
May 28, 2020 - 7:17pm

lmao its cause it doesn't perfectly aligned with the bs opinions that spread here by college students and those who have never worked a single day.

May 28, 2020 - 7:50pm

Please continue to comment. Your expertise is valued here. Otherwise, this will truly be an intern site.

Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
  • 1
  • Prospect in IB-M&A
May 29, 2020 - 12:20am

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Will update my computer soon and leave Incognito so I will disappear forever. How did I achieve Neanderthal by trolling? Some people are after me so need to close account for safety.
Nov 26, 2021 - 11:24pm

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  • Intern in PE - LBOs
Nov 26, 2021 - 11:37pm

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