10,000 Black Interns
We are proud and privileged to again take part in the 10,000 Black Interns programme, which aims to transform the horizons and prospects of young black people in the United Kingdom by offering paid work experience, training and development across a wide range of industries. Since its inception, the initiative has placed over 2,500 interns across 700 companies in 25 sectors. It aims to place another 10,000 over the next five years.
We have worked with three interns this year, up from two last year based on how positive the experience was for all involved. This summer saw us welcome Ify Onyiah and Yunis Mohamed as interns for an initial six week period with Ify enjoying her time with Inflexion so much that she asked to extend her time with us staying a full 15 weeks. They worked with a number of people on the Inflexion team across multiple areas to get involved with research, assessing potential investment opportunities, and even sitting in on board meetings and calls with the portfolio. A third intern is currently in-house through the autumn.
“The 10,000 Black Interns programme benefits all those taking part, with two of our three interns this year already securing jobs they had sought in investment banking. We have been able to bring up talent and meet some outstanding individuals, and look forward to supporting the initiative in the years to come,” says Kirsty Tikerpae, Partner, Inflexion.
Ify has just completed her university degree and was looking to develop her core technical and analytical skills as she looks ahead to completing the CFA UK Level 4 certificate in Investment Management and the CFA Charter.
Ify completed a fifteen-week programme with Inflexion in Summer 2022 which saw her sit within our healthcare team. Towards the end of her stay, Inflexion provided support to Ify to pursue a permanent position with an investment bank
“At Inflexion I have been trusted to independently get on with my tasks while being surrounded by a diverse team that can support me with any challenges I can’t move past, which has made this internship a rewarding learning experience. I expected Inflexion to be very serious and a stressful work environment but everyone I’ve met is humble and has made a genuine effort to get to know me. On most days I will have a coffee with one or two people I haven’t introduced myself to yet, and we’ll chat about our backgrounds and what we are currently working on. I may also meet with someone I’m working on a project with for feedback and next steps.
“I feared I wouldn’t understand anything, and I’d just be nodding my head the entire time, but I underestimated Inflexion’s commitment to supporting the first step of my professional development, as well as my ability to adapt to a role that was radically different to my previous experience. Now I feel comfortable mentioning terms such as “EBITDA” and “cash conversion” in a discussion! I am currently working on a complete due diligence scope for a potential portfolio company, financial modelling of a potential M&A company, and devising a recruitment strategy.
“The people make the firm, and from interning at Inflexion I have learned that I want to be part of a progressive and collegial company where you are empowered to grow in and beyond your role. This experience has accelerated my personal development and made a career in investment management attainable for me - without this opportunity at Inflexion I would have had no idea where to start but now I have defined goals.
“In a PE firm you get to see the entire deal process from deal origination, to sale, and everything in between. The most important thing I’ve learned is that complete due diligence and market evaluation is at the core of every transaction. What I have found unique about Inflexion is their in-house deal origination and value acceleration teams which minimise the middleman in originating and growing their portfolio companies.”
Yunis is currently reading Economics at SOAS and is going into investment banking after he graduates in 2023. He spent 6 weeks as an Intern with Inflexion over the summer and into the autumn.
“Having had the opportunity to work in equity research prior to this internship, I had a basic high-level understanding of leveraged buyouts and the institutional partnership structures of private equity funds. My time at Inflexion has filled in a lot of my knowledge gaps of the asset class including the deal process and the actual mechanics behind the transactions.
“I sat in the Enterprise Fund team, which makes investments in the £10m - £75m range, backing smaller, established fast-growing enterprises. Each day was different, I could be assisting with origination efforts by assessing investment opportunities and taking a deep dive into a company’s financial statements, or I might be attending a board meeting for a portfolio company. You’d often find me in the coffee lounge proactively engaging with investment professionals and people across the firm as I picked their brains on current deals or the thesis behind their investments.
“I’ve learnt a lot during the internship, including what relationship-driven private equity is, and that I had completely underappreciated the importance of skills like building relationships and communication among other soft skills in a deal process. Going forward in my career, I have a clearer understanding of the areas that I can focus on which have the higher long-term pay off.
“From my time at Inflexion, I’ve developed a solid grounding in valuation, accounting and the fundamental bottom-up analysis of investment opportunities. I think this technical analytical skillset will serve as a useful foundation for the rest of my academic journey and professional career. I also have a clearer idea of my longer-term career path and the areas that interest me and what I want to gain further exposure to. One important element I will consider in my career are the people/culture I surround myself with – the people at Inflexion are truly collaborative and willing to dedicate time to help you learn and progress, something unique here.
“I enjoyed the entire experience, with the whole team very generous with their time. The highlights were attending three board meetings and an investment committee meeting.”