Kiwi in name but not so much in culture
Jarden has made its name for itself since its founding in 1961 and has now become New Zealand’s leading investment bank and financial advisory firm. It has come from humble Kiwi roots (with the business starting at the back of a fitting room in Auckland) but since 2020, has crossed the Tasman to go solo with an office in Sydney. Yes, Jarden is a challenger bank, but its arrival (along with Barrenjoey) significantly changed the investment banking scene in Australia. With its entry into the Australian market, it poached a number of ECM big names from heavyweight bulge bracket firms like UBS and Goldman Sachs to muscle its way into relevance.
With that, Jarden has access to solid deals (especially given how it is a relatively new name in Australia), and you can be expected to be staffed on “a good mix of large deals, smaller / growth deals and ECM work”. However, you best be prepared to be thrown into the deep end. Due to its lean team structures and generalist model, you may be quite stretched across several teams or sectors. This is great for “learning opportunities” and your own personal growth if you can handle it, but in any event, we imagine it will not be without great stress and pressure.
Jarden and ambition appear to be synonymous, with speedy growth and aggression being hallmarks of its expansion into Australia. We have heard that this same mentality has affected the values of the firm itself, where the pursuit of expansion has led to a loss of “culture and differentiation”. Not surprisingly, the pace at which Jarden has come into the market is not without cost.
Where results are prioritised, this will inevitably create a high-pressure, cut-throat culture. At Jarden, we have heard of instances of inter-team feuding as well as a number of exits by analysts/associates in the past couple of years. This is not unusual amongst other investment banks but our point here is that if you were looking for something with “better” culture than a bulge bracket firm, you best look elsewhere.
As a challenger boutique, Jarden is one of the best in terms of salaries. With that, you will be expected to work hard and we have heard there is an “early-start” culture with some associates starting at 8:00am/8:30am. A typical day would range from around 11:00pm to 2:00am depending on the team and what you are working on. Unfortunately, we have heard that weekend work is not unusual and that some teams have it even worse. Jarden is not for the faint of heart, but if you are someone that thrives in an environment like this, then Jarden may be a perfect place for you to ply your trade.