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ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)

 
#1 ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
30/12/2006 01:59

PwC bod

Dear Guys,

As my friend the self acclaimed fable instigator would say - ''so whats the story?''

Background: I am a Durham graduate and I have been in PwC for 5.5 years now and 4.5 of these years were in audit where I qualified the ACA and then was project managing audits on cross industry clients and then moved to advisory - valuation & strategy and did pure valuations with plenty of industry/market and comparable research. I am currenly doing CFA and did level one so far.

Situation: I am now looking to move into what I wanted to do for a long time - M&A strategy and at the moment DC sounds like a nice spot for this para regiment drop!

...And my point: Guys, your thoughts would be very much appericated. My questions are as follows:

1) Do I have a reasonable chance with my background?

2) At what level/grade should I pitch myself (senior consultant?)?

3) How does grading and payscale work in DC?

4) Whats is the average length of projects in M&A strategy and how much travel is involved?

5) w/l balance - Should I think about dissolving my assets now to reduce the ~50% divorce payout?

6) Is culture at DC autonomy driven or micro management embossed?

One more point to make things even more difficult - I heard they are expanding thier department outside london (ie. midlands and north) and they looking for people to join there. Is this true?

Your thoughts and comments would be very much appreciated and may take this opportunity to say happy new year to all the reader of this thread!

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#2 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
30/12/2006 10:12

PwC bod to PwC bod (#1)

keeping the thread alive.

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#3 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
30/12/2006 10:16

drifter to PwC bod (#2)

Good thread topic and good questions........ I want to know this too!

regards.

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#4 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
30/12/2006 13:14

anon to PwC bod (#1)

Have you considered applying to The Strategy Group at PwC? They might be more appreciative of the V&S skillset and have roles that fit better into the practice. DC M&A is still part of a wider consulting offering so they tend to prefer a broader perspective - you are likely to be one of many candidates going into the "accountants" pile.

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#5 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
30/12/2006 14:16

Anon to anon (#4)

Currently a C1 a full service house (not ACN) that regularly competes with DC and want to move in the same direction as PWC bod.

Was planning on CIMA, then converting to the ACA further down the line (the ACA is less flexible to study and my employer is not a registered provider of experience due to lack of pure accountancy offering, hance the need to start with CIMA).

Does anyone know what DC or PWC Strat and Valuation would want from a 3-4 year experienced consultant who has worked mainly in a strategic advisory capacity but not for a pure strat house?

Am keen to start a proper job, all this pure consultancy stuff without a qualification or proper role (ie transaction services, corp finance) is making me feel like I'm wasting my time and should have gone through the audit route!

Cheers in advance

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#6 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
31/12/2006 02:18

PwC bod to Anon (#5)

Anon,

PwC startegy (called PIC)- hmmm not sure...the guys are still trying to rekindle the service line and not sure if it will reach DC calibre in the next 10 years! I am looking for a well grown up high profile consulting firm and PwC may have the latter but the former is a let down at the moment. So it has to be DC.

As for the other note:

I def recommend getting a professional qualification. You will have the piece of paper that guarantees relevant market rate as a minimum, where ever and when ever you go!!!

If you want ACA, audit is prob the best and easiest place to get it. But you may have to take a paycut and step down and put up with 3 years of not so interesting work. I work with CF (vals) in PwC now and I know they are supportive of getting quals but I have to say they would rather recruit an ACA then train one (cost and time implication). Although they would allow you to do CFA as it takes less off time! Being honest it won't be easy to get PwC to pay for your ACA at this stage in TS or CF or BRS. ACA is a long time and effort commitment though with a clean cut and strict sack if you fail! They normally recruit the team from audit (ACA qualified).

If you are looking to get into valuations & strategy, well that may well be a better bet as depending on your experience and sector, you can prob start as an executive (around £42k - £50k base) and you can do CFA / Securities diploma for sure with these guys..... If you do well , you can hit manager within 2 years.

As for PwC strat..... perhaps CIMA may well be the case but I wouldnt bet a farmers sheep stock on it! they are still rennovating previous PwC MCS and structure is still a bit airy fairy.

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#7 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
31/12/2006 12:00

PeeWee to PwC bod (#6)

Hate to have to point it out, but PwC Strategy Group and PIC are completely different groups, with different offices and leadership teams.

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#8 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
31/12/2006 14:46

PwC bod to PeeWee (#7)

Agreed perhaps Pee Wee - strategy is london based but both are consulting though!

Well pointed chief!

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#9 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
31/12/2006 15:22

Anon to PwC bod (#8)

Pwc Bod,

Thanks for your reply, I appreciate your insight.

I used to work for a Big 4 audit department tudying ICAS and absolutely hated it so resigned and jumped into consulting. I think i made the right decision vocationally speaking as audit would have driven me mad but I really value the advisory avenues ACA/ICAS can take you and hope to take the more painful self study and longer route roundto a similar position in a few years in an accountancy house.

What sort of work do the strat and valuation dept at PWC do (without sounding like i'm ignoring the obvious in the title). Could you answer the same questions you asked about DC for me?!

Would be good to find out about DC if anyone can help out too.

Thanks in advance

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#10 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
01/01/2007 03:35

PwC bod to Anon (#9)

Anon,

The department is valuation and strategy. Apart from the obvious, there are two sides to it. Valuations - pure commercial valuations, tax valuations, Pre and post merger valuations & impairment reviews. The strategy is more on the economics and mechanics on how how strategic business decisions are made;. This is less of a work stream now due to PwC strategy being there. However, if you are a client facing and interactive person, you might not like it as it is mainly office based untill you hit assistant director.

Answers:

1) Yes I think so

2) junior executive

3) as mentioned before

4) 1 week to 1 month - no or little travel depending on which subsector you work in.

5) w/l balance - ok but not too great - better than consulting

6) Culture is a bit on the micro management side and there is a lot of speculation about everything.

I hope this helps.

PS - Anyone have any insights on DC??????

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#11 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
01/01/2007 23:30

PwC to PwC bod (#10)

any inside comments from any DC bods?

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#12 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
02/01/2007 02:04

DC M&Aer to PwC (#11)

What do you want to know?

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#13 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
02/01/2007 10:06

PwC bod to DC M&Aer (#12)

Could you please read the top of the thread and help out on the questions please. Will be very much appreciated!

Thankyou in advance.

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#14 RE: ACA - M&A strategy (A bridge too far?)
03/01/2007 10:49

yes man to PwC bod (#13)

???

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