I am a Credit Suisse Steps to Success Scholar, currently in my final year at Cambridge University, reading Economics. As a Credit Suisse Scholar, I’ve completed two short internships in the Investment Banking and Capital Markets Division and in the Global Markets Division, prior to a ten week summer internship with the Leveraged Finance and Sponsors Group.
I arrive at the office at 9:00 and begin reading my emails for updates on the existing projects I’m staffed on. One of my main projects with an Analyst, Vice President and Managing Director requires a transaction comparison (a summary and comparison of relevant deals). The Analyst sits down with me to discuss which deals to include, then I spend a couple of hours compiling the information into a presentation slide. I draw information from a range of sources: Google searches and formal databases e.g. FactSet and Thomson Reuters. It’s important to keep track of where your numbers were found, so your Associate can easily review and verify your work. The rest of the morning consists of a variety of ad-hoc requests and meetings.
The Campus Recruitment team organises a series of seminars led by a group head for all IBCM summer interns. This afternoon’s speaker was the head of EMEA financial sponsors M&A. He explained the strategic reasons why companies would opt for M&A, particularly in the current market conditions.
Today, one of the Associates staffed on a separate deal with me, is travelling to Paris on a business trip but he needs my help whilst he’s away. I am to help with a risk assessment document for the Credit Suisse internal team to evaluate.
Another task was to update our model using the Industry team’s forecasts. These forecasts create a base case scenario of the company’s future financial performance. Therefore, we will be able to project how quickly the company will de-lever (pay off its debt) given the debt structure we have designed.
The earlier project involving transaction comparisons picks up again and one of the Analysts requests help to finish off the presentation before a conference call tomorrow morning.
The night before I sent the presentation to Prestech (Credit Suisse’s in-house editing service) which needed formatting and received the amended version by 9:00. I soon realise my Vice President had sent a mark-up of changes in the early morning for the 10:00 call with the Capital Markets team. I immediately had to make the required changes and distribute the most recent presentation to all participants before the call.
In the afternoon, I went for coffee with a Director from my team which I’d scheduled a week in advance. We spoke frankly about his career and his reasons for returning to the team after a few years at a Credit Fund. His advice to interns was to ‘be like a sponge’; the more you immerse yourself into the work, the more you learn.
One of the Analysts takes time out in the evening, when things are less busy, to answer the list of technical questions I’ve prepared for him. This is a good way to cement your understanding of the concepts, plus, it does not distract from your day to day deadlines.
Shortly after lunch, I’m staffed on an internal strategy project for Senior Management, with an Associate and the head of EMEA Financial Sponsors Group. Following this, we all sat down for an initial meeting explaining the project’s objectives and to lay out the task at hand. This was an exciting insight into the strategic organisation of the team; it also showcased the close collaboration with the rest of the Investment Banking and Capital Markets Division.
The rest of the day consists of modelling and updating a presentation to be sent to the ratings agencies next week. This presentation includes details such as the company’s key strengths and weaknesses, how its debt will de-lever, transactional comparisons and prospective pricing details.
One of the Associates returns from his business trip and we review the background search I conducted earlier in the week. Other ad-hoc requests are completed in the morning.
Most of the team are out of the office by 18:00 to have leaving drinks with an Associate who is moving back to Credit Suisse’s office in Switzerland. Later, I meet up with other IBCM interns and explore the London nightlife. Plus, I don’t have to come in this weekend!
The internship was incredibly busy but it meant I’d learnt a huge amount once it was over. It is important to take on as much work as you can, but learn to manage expectations when you are too busy on other projects.
I accepted the offer to join the Leveraged Finance and Sponsors Group and I began graduate training in July 2016.