Trying to break into PE with Subpar CV

Jambalaya's picture
Rank: Chimp | 5

Hey everyone,

I'm fairly new to WSO and in need of some advice. I am trying to break into PE (ideally in London) and as so many have a subpar CV for the industry. Rough overview:
German national with non-target undergrad, international experience including Big4 Acc internship in London. One year FT work experience at a Tier 2/3 consulting firm and going for a Mfin at a (depending on which ranking you believe) top 20-30 Uni in the UK this fall.

Now I'm wondering how to go about my path post Mfin towards a halfway decent PE shop. I'm in no delusion about ever getting into any MF, but a decent MM shop is my goal. I have thought about three different paths and have no idea which might be the most viable for me and don't really know how realistic any of these scenarios are.

  1. Try to do any M&A internship I can get post Mfin (It's a 1 year program, so no SA option for me). This would most likely be at a small, unkown boutique and would hopefully result in either a FT offer or the opportunity at a Tier 3 internship. Then work my way up to Associate lvl at whereever I land and move to PE from there. The issue I see is that I may only be able to secure a position at very unkown firms.
  2. Same as 1. but with very small PE firms from which I can hopefully move on to larger ones.
  3. Try to secure a FT position with a T1/2 Consulting firm (MBB, OW, ATK, etc.), hopefully in related fields and work towards a decent MBA program to then get recruited out of the MBA pool either into IB or straight to PE.

What do you guys think? Are any of these options a good idea? I'm trying to figure this out before I start my Mfin so I can focus on networking and applying with the right people and to the right firms. Any comment or hint is greatly appreciated!