RISING STARS: Meet 16 investment bankers age 35 and under doing huge deals

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Climbing Wall Street's ranks as a dealmaker is no easy feat.

Yes, you need math chops and spreadsheet-modeling wizardry. You also need to tolerate, if not relish, working long hours to close the job. Second place is a set of steak knives, remember.

But that alone won't get you far.

The business is all about building relationships and navigating personalities - those of your clients and of your firm. These skills are more nebulous and can take many years to cultivate. That's why it's such an impressive feat to be sourcing and executing serious investment-banking transactions in your early 30s.

We've rounded up some of the rising rainmakers from firms across Wall Street, culled from more than 200 nominations by peers, clients, and financial institutions themselves. Each has made outsized contributions and distinguished themselves at an early age, earning accolades from superiors and clients alike.

Titles aren't everything - some firms have more layers of management than others - but these are your standouts and managing directors of tomorrow. Or, in some cases, today.

Read on for 16 of the most impressive rising stars in Wall Street investment banking, ordered by age.

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Todd Ruggini, 35, The Carlyle Group

Todd Ruggini, 35, The Carlyle Group

As a principal in co-investments at AlpInvest Partners — a subsidiary asset manager of The Carlyle Group with about $46 billion under management — Todd Ruggini spends his days sourcing, executing, and managing private equity deals. In his current role, he’s taken the lead on 25 direct investments accounting for more than $400 million in the firm’s capital.

A graduate of New York University’s Stern School of Business, Ruggini started out as an analyst in JPMorgan’s technology, media, and telecom investment-banking unit before covering private-equity investments in the same sector for Boston-based Alta Communications. He joined AlpInvest in 2008.

Justin Kotzin, 35, Morgan Stanley

Justin Kotzin, 35, Morgan Stanley

Justin Kotzin has been working in leveraged finance since hitting Wall Street in 2004 right after graduating from the University of Virginia. His first stop was the LevFin team at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, where he spent nearly seven years and rose to vice president before departing for Morgan Stanley in 2011.

He continued his work helping raise private debt and finance leveraged buyouts at Morgan Stanley, earning a steady string of promotions. He was named managing director in January.

Chad Tredway, 34, JPMorgan Chase

Chad Tredway, 34, JPMorgan Chase

Chad Tredway helps run all of JPMorgan’s massive real-estate banking operation in the US, managing a $25 billion book of credit exposure and team of more than 100. He's the cohead and managing director of a group that hauls in more than $500 million in annual revenue providing debt, treasury, and investment-banking services to some of biggest players in the real-estate world.

Tredway’s introduction to finance came as a child: His father worked for a bank in facilities maintenance and consciously exposed him to the world of banking. The Loyola University at Chicago grad and former-D1 track athlete out-hustled the competition on his way to a string of precocious banking milestones. By age 27, he was running a more than $10 billion commercial term lending business for JPM in Southern California. At age 30, he headed to New York City to run the company’s Northeast CTL business, growing the portfolio by 50% in 3.5 years and building it into one of the region’s top lenders. The position made him one of the youngest-ever managing directors at JPMorgan.

Chris Eby, 34, Credit Suisse

Chris Eby, 34, Credit Suisse

Chris Eby has been providing investment-banking advice to financial institutions his whole career. After graduating from Lehigh University in 2005 — his father suggested he major in electrical engineering to unlock more diverse career opportunities — he started out as an analyst in Washington, DC, at boutique FBR Capital Markets, covering specialty finance and banks right out of the gate.

Credit Suisse poached Eby in 2011, and he moved to their New York office with a deep list of finance clients in tow. Among the notable transactions he’s played a key role on since: Ares Capital’s $4 billion acquisition in 2016 of publicly listed private-equity shop American Capital, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board’s $12 billion acquisition of middle-market lender Antares in 2015, and Capital One’s $9 billion buyout of GE’s healthcare-finance unit in 2015. He was promoted to managing director in January.

David Sweet, 33, Deutsche Bank

David Sweet, 33, Deutsche Bank

David Sweet is a Deutsche Bank lifer. The Notre Dame grad joined as a summer analyst intern in 2006 and recently earned a promotion to director in the consumer and business services corporate finance group after lead roles on several major transactions. Among them: security firm ADT’s $15.1 billion take-private and merger with Protection One in 2016, and the $25.4 billion merger of three European Coca-Cola’s bottlers in 2015.

Sweet flirted with a career in ice hockey — he moved from Long Island to the Midwest as a teenager to pursue the sport at a junior level — but was destined for Wall Street. He won a Newsday stock-picking competition for students at age 10 (he picked Microsoft). But today, it’s all deals: Since 2014, he’s completed more than 40 M&A, equity, and debt transactions for more than $90 billion in value. He manages roughly 40 people in his group.

Katie Keenan, 33, Blackstone

Katie Keenan, 33, Blackstone

Katie Keenan is a managing director for one of the world’s largest landlords, working in the real-estate debt strategies group that now holds $15 billion in assets. A magnet for complex transactions, she was part of a team that secured Blackstone’s $23 billion purchase of GE’s real estate portfolio in 2015. She spearhead’s the groups Boston and Washington, DC, coverage and leads a team that completed over 15 transactions worth some $2.75 billion in the past year.

After graduating from Harvard — she has a liberal-arts-tinged perspective thanks to years working at the student newspaper and a degree in history, rather than finance — Keenan spent two years in real-estate investment banking at Lehman Brothers before it was swallowed by the financial crisis. She did stints at two smaller investment shops and then joined Blackstone in 2012. She was promoted to managing director at the beginning of 2016.

Justin Hall, 33, Blackstone

Justin Hall, 33, Blackstone

Justin Hall has worked in Blackstone’s giant private credit business for nearly his entire career. The Cornell grad — he studied information science and was initially leaning toward tech startups — spent a year in leveraged finance at Merrill Lynch before hopping to GSO in 2007. The small firm, with roughly $10 billion in assets in that era, was bought by Blackstone in 2008 and has since soared to $95 billion in assets under management.

Hall, now a managing director, has been there the entire way, sourcing private debt and equity investments across industries for one the world’s largest mezzanine funds and direct lending platforms.

James Griffiths, 33, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

James Griffiths, 33, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

James Griffiths is a key player in Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s industrial investment-banking practice, working with some of the unit’s largest clients to help raise debt and equity financing as well as advise on M&A. BAML’s industrials unit advised fertilizer giant Potash on its $36 billion merger with Agrium, which was announced in 2016 and is expected to close in by the end of 2017.

Griffiths, now a vice president, has ascended to a high level as a relative newcomer to investment banking. The UK native started out in consulting with Accenture in London, where for four years he advised clients — including the London Stock Exchange — primarily on financial-regulatory issues. Bank of America was also a client, and the bank hired Griffiths away in 2010 to join a sales team covering fixed-income futures, options, and cleared derivatives clients. He moved to the New York office shortly after and in 2013, after developing a deep list of global clients, he transitioned to the investment-banking group.

Alexandre Chenesseau, 33, Lazard

Alexandre Chenesseau, 33, Lazard

Alexandre Chenesseau is a rising star as a vice president in Lazard’s technology, media, and telecom investment-banking practice in New York, though his career has taken him across the globe.

Prior to joining Lazard, Chenesseau — who was educated in France and the US — spent several years consulting in Singapore and one year as a financial controller for Danone’s beverage division in Shanghai. He was hired in Lazard’s Paris office in 2009, focusing on equity capital markets for two years before departing to help build out the firm’s operation in Beijing.

As Chinese conglomerates continued to flourish and binge on M&A abroad, the French-American took his expertise to Lazard’s New York office in 2016, focusing on Chinese cross-border transactions. He’s since advised high-profile clients like Seaworld Entertainment — Chinese investors bought Blackstone’s remaining 21% stake in the firm this year — and also played a key role on the $34 billion merger of Centurylink and Level 3 Communications last year.

Samuel Sandford, 32, Greenhill & Co.

Samuel Sandford, 32, Greenhill & Co.

Samuel Sandford cut his teeth in finance with EY in London. The chartered accountant and UK native started in 2007 advising on corporate finance transactions, and when the global financial crisis hit he helped advise the UK treasury department’s financial-stability team.

Sandford jumped to Greenhill in 2010, focusing on the glut of postcrisis restructuring before switching to M&A advisory. He moved to the boutique’s New York City office in 2014, helping executing deals as a generalist initially before developing a focus on sourcing consumer-sector clients, with an emphasis on cross-border transactions. Now a vice president, he’s worked on more than $10 billion worth of deals since joining Greenhill, including a lead role in 2016 advising the founders of London art publisher and event organizer Frieze on a strategic investment from sports and entertainment behemoth WME-IMG — which included negotiations with infamous Hollywood super agent and WME-IMG co-CEO Ari Emanuel.

Aarti Kapoor, 32, Moelis & Co.

Aarti Kapoor, 32, Moelis & Co.

Sometimes you stumble into a great business idea that’s staring you in the face. Aarti Kapoor cycled into hers.

While a junior investment banker at Moelis, which she joined in 2009 after working as an analyst at Citi, the fitness enthusiast kept in shape by spinning at Flywheel Sports in Flatiron. As empty classrooms started to fill up, she knew the business and others like it were primed to take off — and they’d likely need some investment-banking advice.

Kapoor pitched her bosses on initiating coverage on high-growth health, wellness, and lifestyle brands, and soon the junior banker was bringing in deals, orchestrating strategic investments in companies like Flywheel, Barry’s Bootcamp, and Vega, a plant-based sports supplement maker that sold for $550 million. Kapoor, now a senior vice president, continues to run Moelis’ health, wellness, and lifestyle business, which she’s credited with founding.

Reed Rayman, 31, Apollo Global

Reed Rayman, 31, Apollo Global

Reed Rayman was cruising at Goldman Sachs. After a couple of years working on deals as an investment-banking analyst in the industrial group, the Harvard grad joined the firm’s on-balance sheet hedge fund in 2010. It couldn’t have been worse timing. Months later, the Volcker Rule passed, banning the group’s existence, and it was subsequently wound down.

No matter. Shortly after, Rayman caught on at private-equity shop Apollo Global, starting out in the firm's brand-new Hong Kong office. Since moving back stateside, Rayman, now a principal, has worked on some of Apollo’s largest deals. That includes playing a key role in its $15.1 billion acquisition of security firm ADT in 2016 — the largest equity check in Apollo's history. In addition to sourcing and running deals, he sits on the board of six portfolio companies, including seats with ADT, RedBox, and CareerBuilder.

Robert Kalsow-Ramos, 31, Apollo Global

Robert Kalsow-Ramos, 31, Apollo Global

Robert Kalsow-Ramos started out in investment banking at Morgan Stanley covering transportation, but was recruited away to the world of private equity by Apollo Global after only a two-year spell.

A graduate of the University of Michigan Ross School of Business, he has quickly ascended to the role of principal at the now $232 billion asset manager, developing a specialty for business, technology, and financial-services deals. That includes a key role on the firm’s carve out of Puerto Rican payment processor Evertec — which resulted in a $730 million profit and a 5x return on invested capital — and also worked on the $4 billion restructuring of chemicals maker Momentive Performance Materials. This May, he played a lead role on the $5.1 billion leveraged buyout of technology services company West Corp. He sits on the board of three portfolio companies.

Christine Ferris, 31, JPMorgan Chase

Christine Ferris, 31, JPMorgan Chase

Christine Ferris is the global cohead of the CLO primary business at JPMorgan Chase, where as executive director she oversees a team of 15 that has completed more than 50 transactions this year totaling $24.2 billion of capital raised to purchase leveraged loans.

Ferris joined the country’s largest bank in 2007 after graduating from Yale with a degree in psychology. She ascended the ranks at JPMorgan in sales and trading, initially focusing on structured credit sales. She was named global head of CLO syndicate in 2013 and promoted to cohead of the primary business in 2016.

Moritz Baier, 31, Goldman Sachs

Moritz Baier, 31, Goldman Sachs

While a teenager in Germany, Moritz Baier was earning thousands of euros dominating millions of competitors in the popular computer game "Diablo II" (yes, he skipped classes; no, the parents of the first-generation high-school graduate didn’t mind). He used some of his winnings to pay for business school at Stanford, and today he’s a senior associate in Goldman Sachs' burgeoning technology investment-banking business, where he helped build and co-leads the digital gaming and e-sports practice.

Along the way, Baier has worked for and advised some of the world’s most influential people. At Stanford, he was a teaching assistant for Condoleeza Rice. In nearly seven years at IBM (18 countries and five continents), he advised CEO Ginni Rometty and other top executives. Since joining Goldman in 2015, he’s advised Elon Musk and Michael Dell — including on the largest tech buyout of all time: Dell’s $67 billion acquisition of IT titan EMC. All told, Baier has done more than 20 transactions worth north of $100 billion in two years.

Glenn Silverstein, 30, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Glenn Silverstein, 30, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Glenn Silverstein is a top performer in Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s equity capital markets unit, sourcing 15 deals this year across the healthcare sector that pulled in more than $27.5 million in fees for the firm.

The George Washington University grad joined BAML in 2013 after several years at RBS. Silverstein, a vice president, focuses on leading originations for high-growth healthcare companies to fund product development and commercialization. He’s part of a healthcare team that has sourced equity for biotech firms like: Bluebird Bio ($400 million follow-on) — a cancer immunotherapy company that rivals Kite Pharma — and gene therapy firms Audentes (a $75 million IPO) and Regenx (a $139 million IPO).

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