Boutique investment banks continue to eat larger firms' lunch. In the first half of 2015, they accounted for 29% of all M&A deals - and this is down to size of the deals they're working on, not the volume.
In a world where, according to a new report from EY, large investment banks are likely to turn towards advisory functions as they pull back from capital intensive trading functions, this could be considered a worry. But it's also an opportunity - these boutique firms have been hiring.
As we pointed to previously, both Centerview Partners - the highest ranked boutique in ninth place according to new information from Dealogic - and Robey Warshaw have been bulking up their junior ranks as the amount of work they've taken on has increased. Robey Warshaw has continued this, taking on Chris Daly, a former associate in UBS's TMT team earlier this month.
Centerview has advised both Johnson Controls on a potentially $20bn spinout of its car parts unit and Time Warner Cable on its $55bn acquisition by Cable Communications, a deal that LionTree Advisors was also part of.
For juniors, boutiques are arguably a better place to work. Marc Hatz, a former associate at both Goldman Sachs and Moelis & Co, says: "Your responsibilities will be wider in boutiques where they can expect to have increased interactions with senior colleagues and clients."
In the past 12 months, if we go by the Dealogic rankings, boutique investment banks have gone from relative obscurity to being prevalent in the top 20. These are the best six firms to work for now, it suggests.