We've been getting some good reports of holiday parties, and today's best came in the comments to our item this morning asking for more information about this years parties. Go ahead and leave more like this, or email your stories to firstname.lastname@example.org. The best stories will be promoted from comments into full DealBreaker posts. So, so 2.0.
First up, Eustacia Vye (named for our second favorite Thomas Hardy character) thrills us with a tale of Credit Suisse's holiday party from just before the tech boom came to an end.
The asset management division of Credit Suisse celebrated its simul-cuisitions of Warburg Pincus and DLJ in December of 2000 with a black tie affair at Chelsea Piers. I had just started in the business with a junior level analyst position - I skipped out on rent that month and squandered my salary on a knockout YSL dress for the occasion. large cap growth and tech paid the bills that year. Champagne flowed at every table, all night. A portfolio manager actually made out with his assistant on the dance floor. I got hit on egregiously at this and future parties...political incorrectness was definitely a fact of life - the fund guys referred to themselves as rock stars and acted accordingly.
Over the past 6 years, $80 billion in assets and 500 employees have walked out the door. The term "holiday" party was changed last year to "end of year" party because someone was apparently offended by the word Holiday. (Jehovas Witnesses, I think.) And in an hour, today, the annual party will actually be held in a CONFERENCE ROOM. I don't think there will be a carving station.
It's okay, though, because 75% of the guys who quit this place started their own hedge funds and I've been invited to crash three more parties. (Plus I still have the dress.)