How I got into Investment Banking
So i promised to make a tweet about how i got into finance yesterday. So here goes.
Intro: I graduated from OAU with a 2:2 & a 2:1 from the Nigerian Law school (Lagos), served in a village in Cross River (nearly died, another story) and worked in a small law firm in Ugep during NYSC, so I already had a weak hand.
Fresh from NYSC, I went to work in a law firm (litigation & property) in Oshogbo for 15k a month in Jan 2014. My spirit was low at that point. I left after 3 months. Partnered with a friend, mostly property law in rural/semi-urban areas.
While doing that, i focused on getting into finance. At first I wanted to get into a corporate finance law firm like Detail, Aluko & Oyebode, Banwo & Ighodalo but i realized my chances of that were next to nil as i lived in Osogbo/Ibadan and had a weak record.
I took another route, I started reading on finance. I reached out on Twitter and got in touch with people in investment banking. Through this, i got in touch with @tundeoladosu who directed me on the steps to take. I enrolled for the Financial Modelling course then at @edubridge_ng
That was for 7 weeks and i was travelling between Lagos & Ibadan/Osogbo nearly every week during this period. I focused on building a knowledge base. I started my day with reading @proshare which i followed with @dealbook then @BV @business @ReutersBiz @TheEconomist
This really helped when i enrolled for the Edubridge program as i could follow the concepts more easily, only thing i didn’t have was the technicals.
I learnt Advanced Excel use, financial and business modelling, financial research techniques & sources, Powerpoint & so much more
I concluded the program and started job hunting. I was back in Osogbo. It was depressing at first sending CVs and getting no replies. Someone sent out a job opening to all of us that attended the @edubridge_ng program and i sent my CV although i didn’t have much hope
I went for the interview and of those of us at the interview, I had the weakest academic record. I was battling with people who had first class degrees in Economics, Accounting, Finance etc 😬
I did well but was still surprised I got to the second stage. I aced the second stage and waited on a response from the company. That was the last working week of December cos i remember they were having their end of year party that day.
I waited all through the holidays, even spent the holidays at a friend’s in Lagos. I was so anxious. I reached out in early January and was told they would get back to me. I decided to go back home.
A week later i was told to come pick up my appointment letter and that’s how I started work as an Investment banking & legal analyst @PlanetCapital.
I had the best time there working on great deals. I worked on bonds, mutual fund & equity issuance, M&A, private debt & equity deals. I even traded bonds & treasury bills. I had insight into nearly every facet of finance while there for barely 3 years. It was a great experience.
I’m not sure this route might be the optimal way to get into investment banking for other lawyers. But if you already work in a corporate/commercial law firm, it should be way easier for you to get in, just learn the technical aspects (Financial Modelling and the rest)
You can start with a Udemy or Cousera course to learn the basics and enroll in programmes like @edubridge_ng to be properly grounded. Best wishes in your journey