Tl;dr: is the PE career path still as attractive from a financial point of view as it was 5-10 yrs ago? I would argue that the expected career value for the average new joiner is significantly lower today. This is based on a) longer time required to advance; b) more competition; c) commoditization/salary pressure; d) potentially lower fund performance. Is this something you have been observing as well? And if yes, what are the alternatives? Lately, I am pondering the attractiveness of the classic path of climbing up the ranks of a private equity firm. Is PE still as financially attractive from
14 Nov 2020
Happy to answer any questions about recruiting (being a non target and from a non top tier IB), first few months on the job in PE, pros / cons, things I like and don't like. Brief bio below on my background below: Non Target Undergrad Investment Banking Analyst for 2 years Current 1st Yr Associate at MM PE Fund New York based WSO Mentor Want to work with me? Check out my profile here.
12 Nov 2020
Hi ! I am a high school senior with a 3.7-3.8 gpa and a sat score of 1460. I got a mail from Stevenson Institute of Tech today stating that I've been shortlisted for Priority Application through the college board student search service. I'm not sure as to what that entails apart from a priority merit scholarship consideration and if it's a marketing gimmick. Also I saw that it has a decent rep for it's engineering but since I'll be applying for Economics or Finance (up for discussion) and want to break into IB, PE or consulting in NYC(in that order of preference), what's the rep for business
14 Nov 2020
Took a beating on an interview recently - was not expecting technicals given I'm a 3rd year and HH said it was a behavioral round...unlucky. Anyways, wondering if anyone has a list or resource for PE technical questions specifically around debt. I understand the concept of debt, and can model LBOs very quickly. However, I'm not 100% comfortable with concepts like how debt trades or convertible debt terms, etc. I've been mostly a software guy, so not too much debt in a lot of these transactions.
08 Oct 2020
Open to questions of any nature from students, consultants, or anyone else. I am an incoming first-year associate at a tech-focused PE fund, currently rounding out my 2nd year at MBB. I attended a top target (H/Y/P/S/W) for undergrad and interned on the buy-side in undergrad. I can try to help by explaining any part of the process, including what seems to be a trickier jump from consulting to buy-side, or anything more specific that I can be helpful with. WSO Mentor Want to work with me? Check out my profile here.
03 Nov 2020
WSO - I would like to share my knowledge on banking/PE/markets in Africa for those in the market and those willing to be party to the African growth story. Could also help for your PE interviews! Bio: Analyst (3rd year) at MM private equity firm focussed on impact investment in Africa. Target school (in South Africa), undergrad exposure to Math and Finance, prior experience in investment banking at Africa's largest bank. I got into banking via on-campus recruiting and a bit of luck. Made the jump to PE after completing a master's degree in Economics I am able to answer questions about the
16 Sep 2020
I feel like I've been seeing a lot of first year PE associates post on this forum recently about their difficulties starting while WFH. Thought it would be a good idea to create a forum for all of us to share advice / vent / commiserate. For context, I'm about 2 months into the job and definitely don't feel like the grass is greener on this side yet, but perhaps that'll come with time.
22 Sep 2020
For post PE associate role at a portco, what level/title should you expect and what comp (base, bonus, equity)? I'm looking at a combination of Corp dev and fp&a roles in a relatively small SaaS company in tier 2 city. It'd be great to get any insights here!
15 Sep 2020
Hey Monkeys -- hope that you all are similarly recovering from that intense US Open final. Like many of you, the WFH era has given me time to reflect and question what the next 3-5-10+ years of my life look like -- so my apologies in advance for the soppy post and will try to keep it short. For background, I'm a Sr. Associate at a MM PE fund in NYC, and prior to that did my banking years at an EB. The PE experience has been great so far, and I've been lucky enough to stay on board without an MBA. Looking forward, I'm faced with the predictable set of exit options for junior PE investors. The
13 Sep 2020
Curious to know how well LevFin at a top BB places into PE. It's a group I'm interested in possibly trying to move into so I want to get a better understanding of exits. I see a lot of people going into private debt following their LevFin stints but not so much PE (maybe I'm mistaken). Quite short, are LevFin analysts trying to recruit for PE roles at a disadvantage vis-a-vis their M&A counterparts? If so, how hard is it to do (E.G MF PE)?
04 Oct 2020
I'm a current Software Engineer at FB/Google with four years of experience hoping to move to growth equity. I want to move primarily because I feel like I've topped out on what an engineer can make, and I would like to take more ownership on the company-building side of the table without taking on the risk of being a startup operator. I'd also like to increase my compensation ceiling. I also generally like writing arguments and presenting ideas more than writing code, or writing about the technical details for the design of some new service. I'm not sure how to make this transition happen
06 Oct 2020
So I have a small buyside M&A deal on my resume that I plan to walk through for PE interviews. I completely understand the thesis, rationale, etc. as well as the operating model, which I truly did build. However.....this was a pretty small deal for the size of our client, so the modelling process was absolutely not as detailed. Still can justify everything we did in the model, but it doesn't seem nearly as granular. We also didn't bother building a 3-statement, just decently detailed income statement, capex, and NWC. Income statement projections were a decent level of detail but by no means a
02 Oct 2020
I have a Bachelor's in Political Science from a target European University. I then started a master's in Marketing which I didn't finish and did the same with a master's in Finance. By that point, I had secured a full-time offer in a BB in London, in their TMT team. After a bit more than 18 months, I moved to a large bank's Merchant Banking Division, where I have worked across the capital structure (LBOs, Mezzanine, Debt) and I am now focused solely on LBOs and a few special situations investing. I am happy to answer any questions from how to get into IB, lifestyle, TMT exit opps, to how to
22 Sep 2020
Hey WSO - What do you guys know about Siguler Guff? My sense is that they were big on the FoF space and have now diversified into the direct space. Would be great to learn more about them as I honestly can't find a ton online despite the fact that they seem to have a decent bit of AUM (+$10b). Thanks!!
31 Aug 2020
Hi all, I have two summer 2021 internship offers currently on the table. One is with a PE shop in NYC, and the other is investment banking in NYC as well, and both firms have good names. I know a lot of people in the industry recommend investment banking first, but if PE is the end goal for a lot of people, it seems appealing to just go into it after undergrad. What factors I should think about when making a decision? Please let me know your thoughts!
22 Aug 2020
Hey Guys/ Gals, I have been following WSO for a few years now. This is my first post and my goal here is to seek advice, as well as extend it in anyway I can, given my situation. Situation: I went to a non- target in the south for undergrad and managed to get a F150 corp dev job right out of school this year. I went through a pretty extensive networking effort to obtain an IB role these past few years, but nobody wanted me as their slave. I am super grateful for this position during a pandemic-- and although I am only a few months in-- I am receiving great exposure to senior executives
20 Aug 2020
Sorry if this sounds stupid, but where do PE firms get debt financing for their LBOs? I'm very familiar with the LBO process but surely banks are not willing to lend at the amount of leverage demanded by financial sponsors? Is this where private credit comes in? I understand the equity portion comes from the LP but who is willing to commit the debt in the shell company?
13 Oct 2020
I have an upcoming second round interview at a private credit firm, and trying to get any insight on how to properly prepare. I have been in the credit lending space for the last couple years, but we specifically do senior lending. The firm I am interviewing at primarily does direct lending but also participates in mezz and co-equity investments. Can anyone expand on some of the following for me: 1) What to expect in terms of technical questions? 2) How to properly distinguish where to invest across the capital structure? Or where to read up on some of this stuff? 3) Any general tips/tricks
09 Sep 2020
Just wanted some clarification from professionals on this platform. I have returned recently back in my native country, Romania. I saw on the market many companies with great balance sheets that sell for a fraction of the real price. The PE market is also very fragmented in Romania, so the room to establish one as the market leading vehicle is palpable. There are around 6 players at the moment. A couple of examples from my research on what companies are available to purchase: A chain of 10 grocery stores with yearly net profits of 500k euros on a 3 million euro turnover, asking price of 1.2
11 Oct 2020
Not seeing anything else about this on here, so I figured I would start this forum to see if anyone else is going through this process at the moment. I know Bain Capital stopped doing a summer analyst program for undergrads, but I think they must have restarted the program this year unannounced. I did a first round for them last week but did not hear back. They said they're only hiring 2-4 people for this program, Path Into Private Equity (PIPE). First round was two case based interviews and from the looks of it, the super day would be a similar thing but more rounds. Is anyone else in class
22 Sep 2020
Open to answering questions regarding MBB, recruiting, breaking in, day to day life, career choices, etc. Background Academic: MSc in Finance (Europe) - top GPA, public undergrad b-school (target locally) Internships: Summer analyst at MBB; Summer analyst at Goldman Sachs (IMD London); Off-cycle analyst at European Private Equity FOFs. Received full-time offers from all three Other: GMAT 730 WSO Mentor Want to work with me? Check out my profile here.
05 Nov 2020
Hi Everyone, Long-time lurker over here currently at a credit hedge fund focusing on special situations and opportunistic credit. Haven't seen all that much about private credit vs. private equity. Been trying to assess whether I'd like to stay on the credit side or move to the equity side. I like the creative side and uniqueness of the structuring around credit, but I have more of an entrepreneurial mindset and feel like I'd like the PE side of things. I'd love to hear people's take on private credit vs. private equity. What hypes you up about credit/equity? What's the comparative work life
13 Oct 2020
Hey all, over the last few months I interviewed and accepted a SA 2021 position at an EB (PJT/CVP/EVR) and was wondering if the banking to PE route still is a good career option? My understanding is that UMM PE with a buyout strategy is crowded and Megafunds generally push you out after two years. (I am a junior so I may be wrong here). Is it smarter to try and be a career banker or should I begin thinking about Growth Equity and other buy-side roles?
02 Oct 2020
What do people think of the prospects of a mid-level PE professional that wants to try the gig economy, taking projects with different PE firms such as: - Portfolio monitoring: e.g. HQ in your home city while PE firm needs to take a 3-hour+ flight to get there and having you there will save them time that could go into sourcing and executing new deals and give them better oversight - Support in the buyside: e.g. PE based in London and you provide the local angle in a deal in continental Europe - Support in the exit of a portfolio company The idea would be taking 2-4 different projects at a
22 Sep 2020
Hi All, I'm currently in my first year at a generalist MM PE firm, right out of undergrad (state school target like UMich, UVA). The firm is decently well known, especially on its coast (most analysts are from top targets). I receive strong modeling, diligence, and portfolio ops work experience at the firm. I'm considering moving to tech growth equity down the line, an wanted any advice on how to best position myself to move into tech growth equity within 2-3 years (not looking for an immediate move). Experience wise, I had a BB Tech IB internship in college, majored in Econ and CS, and have
18 Sep 2020
Hi - I graduated from Wharton Undergrad in 2017, took a year off, and then worked 2 years at a lower middle market private equity fund. Perhaps I have an untraditional background, but I do have the target school degree on my resume. I also have great experience doing diligence, modeling, etc. Any recommendations on ways for me to lateral to another private equity fund?
15 Sep 2020
What's up all my cool cats and kittens? I'm seeking some advice from the many smart folks available on this platform. This is my first post, so hopefully I don't get shit on too badly. I work at an aviation company that is focused on three main areas: 1) Used Serviceable Material (USM) 2) New Part Distribution (on behalf of OEMs) 3) Serviceable Aircraft/Engine Leasing and Trading I work in the leasing and trading division where we buy serviceable aircraft and engines, lease them out to Airlines/Lessors to utilize their remaining life, and then, once they become unserviceable, we transfer them
19 Nov 2020
Hi guys, saw some top performing PE Associates exiting to Tiger, Viking, Loan Pine Capital etc. What do those funds pay in order to convince people to join from PE firms like Apollo? Any insights on W/L balance?
17 Nov 2020
Hi everybody, I have just absolved my second analyst year at an investment bank in Germany. Now I'm in contract negotiations with a midcap private equity fund. I know for sure that there will be a pay cut regarding my fix salary. Does anybody here made a similar experience and can tell how high his/her fix pay cut was (in percentage or absolute figures)?
14 Nov 2020
I've been lucky enough to land two consulting internships (after junior year of college) - one from Deloitte, and another from Strategy& (PwC). I'm wondering which one I should take. Here's what I'm thinking so far, where a "*" indicates that these are the most important factors I'm taking into consideration: Just to emphasize, name-brand is really important to me, as is the possibility of transitioning into MBB for the following summer - Deloitte (currently leaning towards this choice): *please correct me if I'm wrong, but the name brand here is better I think (at least according to Vault)
14 Nov 2020
Background: - Currently a senior consultant at a big 4 with a handful of projects under my belt. - Hoping to write CFA level 3 in May, I was planning to write it this summer but it got delayed because of covid. I am acing the mocks consistently now so I am pretty sure I can pass it. - Completed the FMVA - Undergraduate in finance from a non-target - I have a stack of trade thesis I write to trade my personal savings (mostly swing trading in FX and indices) I can show off in interviews and I made decent returns over the years. The analysis is all in macroeconomics. I know this is more hedge
11 Nov 2020
When analyzing a potential LBO target and try to make a judgement regarding its CAPEX/NWC requirements and Free Cash Flow size, are there any % thresholds we can use to determine if the CAPEX/NWC requirements are high in general? Same goes for Free Cash Flow conversion/ % of FCF in terms of revenue. It is of course very dependent on the industry, but can any seniors give some insights into how one can make a first judgement? Thanks in advance.
11 Nov 2020
Hey guys, anyone know anything about Private Equity Capital Markets teams? Been approached by a few top funds on CM teams - sourcing funding for acquisitions. Wondering what kinda work they do, skills, comp - compared to the acquisitions teams? Heard it's good because you pretty much work on every deal but would be good to get some opinions here!
05 Nov 2020
Hi all Is it common for a new analyst who joined the firm awhile ago to be tasked on crappy projects? I am a 2nd year analyst who joined a new firm but it seemed other two analysts who were with the firm 1-2 years already get better projects. The reason why I think this way is because we recently got a really important deal and my partner swapped out the other analyst from a deal, that is dragging for 2 years but we intend to close eventually, with me so she can work on a more important deal. Also, whenever we have deals, the two other analysts get priority. I feel like a substitute. And at
03 Nov 2020
For a FIG (non bank) ratings associate is IB or a PE role even remotely attainable? I've rated LBO. HY transactions and standard IG published research.
03 Nov 2020
Currently A1 at EB and want to exit in the next year. I am having a tough time deciding if I am more interested in growth equity or traditional private equity, and I was wondering which firms offer more "generalist" programs where associates get to work on both more growth oriented investments as well as the more debt-heavy buyouts. Thank you all!
02 Nov 2020
Hi all, Just writing to say hello and glad to be part of this community. I am looking to gain more internal insight regarding equity research and PE as well as IB, since I am trying to figure out the area I am most interested in. I am currently an accountant/analyst at a real estate company that focuses on acquisitions and property management and looking to make the move more out of real estate. Currently studying for the CFA Level 1. Any advice is welcomed. Looking forward to being part of this community. Nick C.
02 Nov 2020
Hello Everyone a little late to the game. Just recently realized, as I am about to turn 25 I would preferably like a career in PE, IB, HF or VC. My current background is: Undergraduate BBA with a minor in Finance at a university in Central America and as you´d figure Non Target School (2.7 GPA) Work Experience: 2 Years in Corporate Finance Role in Central America (US Citizen) for a Commercial Real Estate Firm with main responsibility as FP&A. After a year I have been promoted to Senior FP&A and have additionally managed to take on a bit of Equity Research (Real Estate Specific) and some M&A
01 Nov 2020
I am currently starting my journey to break into IB/PE I am 24 will be 25 by January 2021. I am currently enrolled at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign iMBA programme and have about 1/3 down, good GPA so far over 3.5 and probably can close with a 3.7. Just took the decision to break into BB. I already have a BA degree with a minor in Finance from a Non Target (Actually studied in Guatemala, Central America) and I am currently working in Guatemala, Finance focused mainly FP&A, some M&A(1 transaction) and Equity Research (4 companies) experience. With my background and this iMBA do you
01 Nov 2020
I'm talking about industries like airlines, energy, data centes. And private equity (ex-infra guys). I believe my question essentially is that while value creation depends on ROCE it's not entirely driven by it. Infra guys investing in areas like tollroads and such, where they run down the asset over a decade or 2, I understand. But industries like data centers and energy, where one can have EBITDA expansion with bolt-on aquisitions and geographic expansion. Why have these industries been a primarily infra play?
31 Oct 2020
Hey guys, I was reading some data about US private equity funds in Europe. Some firms such as KKR and Carlyle have invested a lot in Europe. Others, which are considered MF, have deployed a relative small of their AUM in Europe. Apollo are one of them, in US it's for sure a MF, but in Europe apparently has the same size of a MM. What are the best US funds in Europe/London? Will London ever reach NYC market size for Private Equity? Does the salary in the same fund vary between London and NYC for the same position(from associate to Partner)?
31 Oct 2020
I am in process of lateraling from my current shop and am somewhat deep in the process with a couple of the below firms. Wont specify which one, but was wondering if you can provide some color on their culture, returns, bschool exits and anything else you think is relevant. AEA American Securities Lindsay Goldberg New Mountain Capital Veritas Welsh Carson
31 Oct 2020
Hi guys, I am currently interning at a small regional PE fund. PE has been my career goal for quite some time, but so far I am a little bit disappointed in the type of work that I do. I wanted to ask you whether it is small PE fund characteristics and I should aim towards larger funds or if I should just get used to it / change career plan. There is a lot of deal sourcing - cold mailing every day, looking for companies and adding them to database and many other sourcing tasks. And it is not only an intern task - even 2nd and 3rd year analysts are actively cold mailing. Because the fund invests
30 Oct 2020
Extremely fortunate to be able to secure a summer gig at a MF on their credit team earlier this recruiting season. I was just concerned regarding FT - in the worst case that stuff doesn't work out and I don't get a return, would I get good looks from top BB firms and PE firms for their analyst program or would I be fucked since I didn't do an IBD internship instead? Honest question, I'm just figuring out how to prepare for all cases and would hate to be blindsided come senior year. Thanks in advance for any input.
29 Oct 2020
I graduate with my Master's in Accounting this December. I don't start my FT IB Analyst job until July 2021, leaving me 7 months of down time. I originally allocated this time to study for the CPA exam, but given that I won't be working in public accounting, I won't be able to become "licensed" despite having passed all four parts... is this process even worth it? What pains me about the CPA is dropping $3k+ on test prep materials (my firm won't reimburse me) for an exam that won't allow me to get "licensed," so I'm concerned that this endeavor would be a huge waste of time and money. Does
28 Oct 2020
Got placed in a product group at one of GS/MS/JPM and am very excited to be here. If I were to consider buyside opportunities, I think I would LOVE to exit to a Healthcare focused firm or at least at a place where I can get lots of Healthcare exposure. I have no doctors in the family, was not a bio or chem major, and barely keep up with the industry at the moment, mostly because I barely keep up with any industry at all given I am fresh out of school and currently focusing strictly on my job. I would want Healthcare because I am genuinely a pretty intellectually curious person and would likely
27 Oct 2020
Hi everyone, How does an Analyst prepare for Associate role? I am a 2nd year Analyst (1.5 years in PE) and I am paired with an Investment Manager on deals. Normally, she does financial modelling and and usually gives basic excel and PowerPoint work to me. I understand an Associate needs to know financial modelling well but I am not given the opportunity to do financial modelling. So, how do I practice financial modelling or show seniors that I can do financial modelling? She is very specific and likes her way regarding financial modelling so I feel she won't appreciate my contribution to
27 Oct 2020
A lot of people are unable to live the 60-80 hour grind building excel models or fixing up powerpoints for their MDs and clients. I heard a lot of people exit PE to Product Management but they usually get their firm to sponsor them for an MBA and then make a switch. Would you go right for the jump into tech if you had the choice back then or still go for the grind which comes with the money?
24 Oct 2020