“If you want to be five guys and a dog, you don’t need a lot of money,” Joseph Perella tells DealBook’s Andrew Ross Sorkin in today’s profile of his new investment bank, Perella Weinberg. “If you want to have a firm with global reach and presence and you want to fund the model that we developed, that needed significant capital.”
Sorkin’s piece tells the tale of how Perella and Tarek F. Abdel-Meguid spent the summer after they left Morgan Stanley hanging around the offices of Weil, Gotshal & Manges, having lunch with the likes of Sandy Weil and Steve Schwarzman and plotting to take over the world.
Once it became clear to Mr. Perella and Mr. Meguid that they were not going back to Morgan Stanley, they came up with a grand plan: to create a boutique bank far bigger than a merger adviser, one that would also include a large asset-management business.
And unlike many of the most successful boutiques, which started on a shoestring, like Evercore Partners or Greenhill & Company, the two men wanted to start much, much bigger.
Mr. Perella said he told Mr. Meguid: “If this is like starting Wassperella” — referring to Wasserstein Perella, a firm he started with Bruce Wasserstein — “or an M.& A. boutique, I’m not interested. Been there, done that.”
We’ve all had those kind of summers. You’ve left your job, you just pal around with your buddies, you hatch grand schemes and promise yourself that next time around things will be different. But we don’t all know the grandson of Sidney Weinberg, who Sorkin describes as “the patriarch of the modern Goldman Sachs” or ten other people who are willing to put up a total $1.1 billion to fund your dreams.
The Pressure of Great Expectations [New York Times]