Investment bankers serve a critical social function in their work as corporate advisors, facilitating capital allocation and managing risk. This course will explore bankers' activities from both a theoretical and practical perspective, with the aim of preparing students to counsel--or to pursue career as--advisors to corporations on significant financial and strategic decisions.
We will begin from a theoretical perspective, establishing basic corporate finance concepts and valuation techniques. Then we will give detailed attention to the economic and legal analysis underscoring four principal activities of investment bankers: advising on mergers and acquisitions, raising debt capital, raising equity capital, and corporate restructurings.
For each type of transaction we will begin with theoretical context for the economic, legal, and strategic reasons that corporations pursue each activity. Then, using case studies of specific transactions, we will illustrate the investment banker's role in each activity through detailed description of each process, including preparation and presentation of financial analysis and coordination with capital markets participants. Finally, we will consider the nature of and need for legal counsel throughout the banker's work. Throughout the course, we will be joined by practitioners who will shed light on the strategic and financial considerations that gave rise to the transactions we will study. Rather than an exam, students will be evaluated on problem sets, group work product reflecting investment bankers' tasks in connection with each of the activities that will be our focus, and class participation.
In addition to students considering transactional practice and investment banking, the course may be of particular interest to students contemplating practice in securities regulation and corporate law. Courses in corporations and corporate finance are prerequisites, although these may be waived in consultation with the instructors.