What skills will new Associates and Senior Associates have when they join, and what skills will they be expected to develop over time?
At Coller Capital we attract talented people from investment banking, financial institutions and consultancy firms. We hire people with good technical skills in modelling and valuation, a broad financial understanding, and a good grasp of the investment industry. Successful candidates will be able to think independently, develop investment judgement, come to a firm view, and convey that conviction to the business.
Most of our new hires are new to the industry, and they learn to see things from an investor’s perspective over time, looking at potential investments across a wide range of geographies and asset classes. As they become more experienced, our Associates and Senior Associates develop a broader perspective and fine tune their investment judgement – good preparation for more senior roles in the firm.
What will Associates and Senior Associates learn from working in the Investment Team day to day?
New recruits are assigned to live projects almost from day one, learning hands-on the way that secondaries investors work. People should expect to look at a range of opportunities in their first year, working with different teams across the firm. Our offices in Hong Kong, London, and New York work very closely together – very much a borderless team; interacting across different cultures is an essential and enjoyable aspect of Coller life.
We encourage people not to focus only on investments, but to think constantly about what we as a firm could do better – how we could improve and innovate. Most of our people are involved in firm-wide initiatives.
Coller’s culture is team-focused and non-hierarchical. We believe free access to the accumulated experience of our colleagues, built over more than quarter of a century of Coller Capital experiences, is a great way to move rapidly up the learning curve.
What is the longer term career path within the investment team?
Someone who joins as an Associate will typically spend two or three years learning how we do things. After that, he or she may progess to Senior Associate or opt for a different path, returning to school to do an MBA for example. It all depends on an individual’s capabilities and goals.
Senior Associates typically join with more experience, hoping to develop existing skills and build a long-term career with the firm. Progression at Coller is based strictly on merit and performance; and people who demonstrate the right aptitude and ability do not find themselves hampered by bureaucratic processes. There isn’t a standard career path!
Our highly-customised training programme complements continuous on-the-job learning, helping Senior Associates to make the step up to Investment Manager, and from there to Principal – and eventually, with luck, to Partner.