Landing a job on the buy-side is a notoriously difficult task. The sheer number of people who apply to work at hedge funds, private equity firms and venture capitalists means you’ll likely need a blue-chip resume just to earn an interview. An MBA can help you separate yourself from the herd.
We scoured our CV database containing more than 900k resumes to identify the business schools that will give you the best chance for a career on the buy-side. As one would imagine, the list is made up of top programs, with U.S. business schools being the biggest feeder of talent. There were some surprises, however. Graduates of NYU’s Stern School of Business, a top destination for prospective investment bankers, don’t populate as many chairs on the buy-side as one might think. There are also fairly large gaps between top-rated programs in Europe and Asia. Columbia edging out Harvard and Wharton may come as a surprise to some, though it finished atop the list last year as well and was second in 2016.
The rankings are made up of the MBA programs with the highest percentage of graduates from each school who are currently working at hedge funds, private equity firms or venture capitalists. Schools included in the rankings needed to hit a minimum threshold of current buy-side employees and total MBAs grads within our database to be statistically significant, hence the omission of Stanford Graduate School of Business, which does well within the VC world but provides too small of a sample size overall.
It’s important to note that the rankings are based on the percentage of graduates from each business school working at hedge funds, private equity firms and VCs, not the overall total. MBA programs with larger enrollments like Wharton, Columbia, Harvard, Booth, INSEAD and London Business School account for the greatest number of buy-side employees, but the rankings are shifted slightly because a few other qualifying programs enroll fewer students yet sport higher percentages. An argument can be made to give those five schools an extra bump as more of their alumni are in the business and can help make introductions, though they all rank very highly anyway.
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