Career Move - Corporate Business Development - Anyone have experience?

First a little background on myself: I currently handle all of the FX trading for my company. Its hedging roughly $1B of backlog ($100M in FX options). I also help to manage the company’s $1B cash portfolio (Commercial Paper, Money Markets, etc…). I have been in this capacity for about 4 months now after moving from another position in the company. I am a year out of college and currently studying for CFA L1 (Dec '08). I have always been interested in I-banking but quite frankly didn’t have the grades coming out of college to have a shot. (3.2 from a State school). I do have quite a few connections at bulge bracket firms (20+) that I could leverage to get my foot in the door. I do enjoy my 40 hour (35?) a week job and easy lifestyle, but am thinking of aiming a bit higher. I recently was talking to our Corporate Business Development group (basically 2 man shop) about what they do and it seems pretty interesting. It is basically a support organization that owns, maintains, and facilitates the business process for acquisitions, divestitures and equity investments. It is very in depth research (these guys are former engineers with pretty in depth knowledge of the market space) with a lot of modeling and due diligence. This seems like it would be a pretty unique job that would give me some valuable modeling and M&A experience. I also think it would be possible to do both, i.e just pick up some extra work from this group while continuing my current job. Has anybody ever worked in this capacity before? What kind of opportunities can it lead to? Would working with this group make me more marketable to a bank? What exit opportunities exist within my current position? I-Banking vs. something else? My plan was to get CFA L1 under my belt then to start looking around a bit in January - February. Feel free to add any other suggestions or comments. Thanks!

bump… Numi, JDV, anybody have any thoughts?

isn’t that just buyside boutique M&A advisory for corps? I’m not getting it. Corporate Development is usually a catchall for an in-house investment banker.

I work in corporate developlment, it has a lot of similar work to ibanking but with less hours. I can’t speak for everone, but to describie the work I do as an analyst I’d call it a mix between equity research type activities and ibanking. So you need to be able to model, but you also need to understand the companies ans industries in terms of how they would fit with corporate strategy, etc. versus just number crunching.

In my view, that would be excellent experience if you’re wanting to eventually get into i-banking – especially if you’re interested in m&a specifically. I’m at a boutique m&a firm (after a few years in corp. finance), and it would have been extremely helpful to have done a stint in corp. development before moving into i-banking. And if you can learn from the engineer types that do the modeling, you’ll be that much more qualified.

steph96 & artvandalay: can I email both of you with a couple of questions? shoot me your email here or to jperlin (at) gmail (dot) com if you dont want to post it. Thanks.


I have exactly the same position as artvandalay and its great. I normally describe what I do as “banking with fairly normal hours and less pay”.

Do these corp dev jobs exist for entry level? I have been looking for openings on the various job search sites, and have never seen a listing for one geared towards recent grads. What is the path to get into these positions after graduating?

kcin Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > I have exactly the same position as artvandalay > and its great. I normally describe what I do as > “banking with fairly normal hours and less pay”. This is another good summation. I’ve seen couple of postings that required 0-1 years of experience, for the most part I would say 2-3 for entry level is more common. I wouldn’t be disscouraged though, I do have a friend who got into a similar gig right out of school. You just have to make yourself look as solid and interested as you can.

I was lucky enough to get this job directly out of school. Having previous and similar co-op experience helped immensely though. It was a very competitive process and I haven’t seen too many other similar postings.

Thanks for the inputs everyone. Stef - what region are you located in?