Centerview is one of Wall Street's most highly respected M&A advisory firms. It's known for working on high-profile deals for clients like CBS, CVS Health, and Time Warner. Centerview is also known for compensating its people very well. Salaries and bonuses are top-notch, medical benefits are excellent, and it offers many other perks like free breakfast and lunch and large dinner stipends. Recently, the firm has made a huge push to improve its diversity recruiting efforts.
Major Office Locations
Centerview is looking for highly intelligent, creative self-starters with strong quantitative skills, strong communication skills, a genuine interest in investment banking, and the ability and desire to take on a lot of responsibility. Centerview’s summer interns are staffed on live assignments, given the opportunity to take on a lot of responsibility, and given access to senior professionals. Interns essentially operate as first-year analysts. Meanwhile, Centerview’s full-time junior bankers receive access to nearly endless career development opportunities. There’s a fantastic analyst-to-associate promotion program, highly valuable formal training taught by Centerview bankers, and an apprenticeship culture where seniors are always willing to take time out of their days to offer s...
About the Company
In 2006, UBS Vice Chairman Blair Effron had dinner with his friend Robert Pruzan, a veteran investment banker and former CEO of Wasserstein Perella. The two men decided to capitalize on the lucrative M&A boom by going in to business together, opening a boutique they dubbed Centerview Partners—the name came from the view at their new office on the 19th floor of Rockefeller Center. The firm has since moved to larger offices in New York; it also has offices in London, Palo Alto, Paris and San Francisco. And today, that firm’s clients include 20 percent of the 50 largest companies in the world.
At Centerview, there are just two lines of business: M&A advisory and restructuring, with both businesses addressing strategic, financial, and operational issues for its clients. (An affiliated capital group focuses on...
“As the world has emerged into endemic Covid, the senior leadership firm spent a lot of time with all bankers discussing the career and social benefits of collaborating in office. While significant flexibility remains (people are treated like adults and not watched over), the quality of life in-office, together at the global firm offsite, and at firm-sponsored outside activities is tremendous. The small- firm feel still remains, and the office is a warm and inviting place to be—on most days it feels like going to work with friends.”
“We don't have a strict vacation policy (there is no policy at all), which has pros and cons—you might be able to take more aggregate vacation in a year than if we had a policy, but the vacations might be less protected (especially weekend vacations that aren't weddings). We don't have a protected Saturday program, but most teams try to avoid unnecessary Saturday/weekend work (this can be a bit of a function of who you are working with). In general, I think work/life balance varies pretty widely by analyst, depending on how you have been staffed, but overall, it feels in line with the industry.”
“I moved from a platform that had protected Saturdays, which I thought was great. When I came here, and observed how senior people actively try to avoid having people work on weekends unnecessarily, I realized the protected Saturday thing is not necessary—you just need the right mindset/cultural framework.”
“The firm is really focused on work/life balance and practices what it preaches. No ‘mandatory weekends off,’ which never seems to work, but rather a concerted effort to minimize wasted work and manage teams to allow members to attend important events. Everyone is very reasonable when something comes up, and vacations are usually respected. It’s relatively easy to take time off as long as your team is alright with it. People are very understanding of family and personal events as well. The worst aspect would just be that there is no formal rule on vacation/leave, so people do tend to underspend their vacation days rather than stretch it. Depends on their personalities, though.”
Getting Hired Here
“Centerview runs a thorough interview process to make sure candidates really get to feel like they know the firm—and that the firm really gets to know them across a number of interviews. In addition to picking candidates who excel in quantitative reasoning and qualitative areas like communication and creativity, Centerview is also looking to bring in a group of colleagues who will enjoy each other's company and foster a friendly and collaborative workplace.”
“First-round interviews are generally on campus and spearheaded by alums. Super Days are allocated to a certain number of students per school and consist of five 30-minute interviews back-to-back covering behavioral, technical, fit, leadership, and brainteaser questions. Ideal candidate is well-rounded with an impressive academic track record and differentiated experiences and perspectives, and has a genuine interest in IB and good reasoning to back that interest up. It’s key to perform well during the interview process.”
“The recruiting process typically includes a first-round interview followed by the Super Day, but it can vary. I believe the ideal candidate is a creative thinker with some finance background and experience who can articulate why they want to have a career in investment banking and why they would be a good fit at Centerview in particular.”
“We have a robust interview process with six to seven interviews including the Super Day. The candidates we look for are generally very intelligent people with an inclination to pursue banking as a long-term career. Everyone has to be self-starting and able to handle a lot of responsibility.”