Don’t tell London Business School MBAs about Europe’s supposed moribund economy. Led by substantial increases in hiring by the likes of McKinsey & Co., Amazon, and Deloitte Consulting, the Class of 2014 has put up splendid pay and placement stats that belie Europe’s less robust recovery. That is good news for a school that sends 67% of its graduates into the European economy.
In a just released 2014 employment report, the school said median salaries were $117,836, with median signing bonuses of $25,251 and year-end bonus of $20,575. Those sums were converted from British pounds when the Aug. 1 currency translation helped to somewhat inflate the numbers. But the reported salary figure was 5.2% higher, or $5,836, than the year-ago base of $112,000, while the bonuses were a bit lower: $26,282 for signing and $22,382 at year-end.
The highest guaranteed year-end bonus in the class was a whopping $260,000 for a consulting job in Latin America–far more than last year’s $75,882 high mark. The MBA with the highest base salary–$223,320–also exceeded the 2014 high of $193,877. The highest salaried MBA landed a job in the corporate sector in Australasia. It was also a corporate sector position that paid the highest sign-on bonus this year: $109,419 for a job in the United Kingdom.
93% ACCEPTED JOB OFFERS THREE MONTHS AFTER GRADUATION, DOWN FROM 95% IN 2013
Those big pay days were in all probability achieved by some of the older graduates in last year’s cohort. Unlike most U.S. business schools, London Business School accepts a wider range of candidates. At the upper end of age and experience, there was a 40-year-old with 15 years of work experience in the group. The average age was 31, versus 27 at Harvard Business School.
London said that 93% of its graduates accepted a job offer three months after graduation, a tad below the 95% level of 2013, with 72% of the Class of 2014 taking on jobs with new employers and 21% returning to their pre-MBA companies. Some 26 MBAs of the 394-member class were self-employed or started a new business, up from 20 a year ago. London’s primary European rival, INSEAD, does not expect to release its 2014 employment report until late May or early June.
The school’s 2014 employment report showed that a slightly higher percentage of graduates went into consulting last year. Some 32& of the class was hired into consulting jobs, up from 29% a year earlier. Consulting–which paid the highest median salaries of $125,117–captured more of London’s graduates at the expense of the corporate sector which fell to 40% from 43%. Tech stood out among the corporate employers, with 16% of the class going to Internet, e-commerce, high-tech and telecom companies. Google, the most desired tech employer these days, only hired five MBAs from London, down from seven a year earlier, but last summer took 15 MBA interns from the school so the search engine giant will likely increase its hiring from LBS this year.
FINANCE HALTED ITS STEADY DECLINE SINCE THE GREAT RECESSION
Finance remained in its worldwide slump in MBA hiring, but at least the sector halted a steady decline that started with the Great Recession in 2009. The finance industry has taken 28% of LBS’ MBAs in the past two years, down from 46% in 2007 and 38% in 2010. Among the MBAs headed into The City and other jobs in finance, 12% took i-banking slots, 7% accepted jobs in private equity and venture capital, 6% in investment management, 2% in retail and commercial banking, and 1% in insurance.
Even so, the big names in finance were still out recruiting. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and Nomura each employed four LBS grads last year, while Citi emerged as the school’s largest financial employer, taking on nine MBAs. Finance could be primed for a bit of a comeback with this year’s crop of MBAs because Goldman brought on 10 interns from London Business School this past summer, and Credit Suisse, which didn’t even hire two MBAs from London last year, had nine interns on his payroll.
INDUSTRY CHOICES OF LONDON BUSINESS SCHOOL MBA GRADUATES OVER THE YEARS