An investment banker provides financial advisory services to his/her clients, of specialized nature, depending on the client’s requirements. An investment banker typically performs role in equity research, mergers & acquisitions, asset and portfolio management, financial modeling, etc. Let’s see how the profile of an Investment Banker looks like and how they progress in this field –
At the entry level, candidates join as analysts. Typically they have MBAs in finance or are CAs, some are even undergrads.
- The role of an analyst is to help the senior bankers with presentations, financial analysis including modeling and valuation and also other administrative items. Initially an analyst will spend 80% of his/her time doing admin items, researching data, making pretty slides and building and maintaining databases. The exciting work of valuations, modeling and client interactions may be limited to only 20% of the time. This varies depending on the team (Capital raising work is quite different from that of M&A teams), analyst capability and of course, the market conditions.
- As they move up to be associates, they take on more responsibility. Leadership and project management become important. At this point they’re expected to provide advisory functions and lead their juniors with the use of their expertise. He is expected to liaison with the management and his team members for execution of the projects. Successful implementation helps them move up a step further towards becoming a bigger name in the market.
- As they move further up to become Vice Presidents (VPs / SVPs) or Managing Directors (MDs), they become increasingly responsible for bringing business into the firm. So slowly the focus shifts from getting the numbers right to getting the client interested in your idea. They have to continuously network and be close to their clients and essentially the role becomes more aligned to ‘sales & marketing’. Of course, this does not mean they can drop the ball on being accurate and financially sound. Senior bankers are often on the move, traveling to meet clients or to close deals.
Companies to target:
Following are the popular companies which attract most of the talent. With the rise of MNCs, demand of investment bankers in their Indian units has reached by leaps and bounds.
- Notable International names: Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, UBS, Nomura, Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Citi, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, HSBC, Standard Chartered
- Notable Indian names: Kotak Mahindra, ICICI Securities, Yes Bank, Avendus, HDFC, SBI Capital, Edelweiss