How has your career progressed during your time at CMA? How long have you been here?
I’ve been with CMA now for over 10 years. I started as an analyst and am now a Senior Managing Director and co-head of the investment banking restructuring practice. I have a unique perspective, having spent the majority of my career at CMA and being part of the firm’s evolution. Looking back on the growth and successes we have achieved is very rewarding.
What originally drew you to a career in investment banking? Has your career differed from how you imagined it would be as a college grad?
Having been an athlete most of my life, I was drawn to investment banking due to its highly competitive nature and fast, team-based environment. I have been able to leverage my analytical background and quickly gain exposure to different industries and corporate functions and work with a wide range of clients. Moving into restructuring was a curveball that I have found stimulating and satisfying. This has given me a more in-depth strategic approach to transactions that has expanded my skill set.
What is unique about working at CMA, a mid-sized, family-owned firm, compared to a larger firm?
In a word, flexibility. CMA operates with an entrepreneurial mindset which allows the firm to be nimble and formulate creative solutions that service a wide range of client needs. The vision and strategy of the firm is fluid and constantly evolving. We strive to never be satisfied with the status quo and are focused on progressing to best service the need to our clients.
What is the most rewarding aspect of working on/closing a deal?
Investment banking is a very tangible business. There is a beautiful symmetry to watching a deal unfold from start to finish. Starting with a strategic vision, implementing it and witnessing the outcome and impact on the business can be very gratifying. I think the reward is even greater on restructuring transactions as you are typically helping businesses work through turbulent situations and assisting them in the creation and implementation of strategies that enable them to emerge stronger.
What unique skills can you highlight as exceptionally beneficial to your role on a deal?
At the end of the day we are deal makers. Being able to communicate effectively and build consensus in difficult situations is a core competency. This requires a strong vision with clear supporting details. Perseverance, creative thinking/problem solving and a tireless work ethic are other key competencies.
How does the CMA team differentiate its investment banking expertise in the market? What does your team offer clients that is different/better than other, larger firms?
We don’t shy away from the most difficult of situations. We pride ourselves on crafting creative solutions for the most complex and challenging engagements and delivering the best results for our clients. We are aggressive advocates and we bring an owner’s mentality to the table when negotiating.
So far 2017 has been a very active year for the CMA investment banking team. Can you give some indication of how active the team has been? What do you expect for 2018?
In 2017, our investment banking team has had the benefit of a few long term complex restructurings that have carried over from 2016. Combined with new business, this has made 2017 a busy year. This summer has been particularly exciting as we had three engagements successfully close in short order. The restructuring marketplace continues to be active and with a strong team in place we are focused on creating a pipeline into 2018 to build on the momentum created in 2017.