Josh Aalbers

Based in


Job title and business area


Year joined Lazard


Year attended the International Banking Cycle


Participating in the International Banking Cycle (“IBC”) gives students the opportunity to meet the world’s leading, most prominent investment banks whose aggregate track record accounts for the vast majority of deals being done worldwide. The workshops provide you with a first-hand experience of how M&A works in practice and offer the opportunity to meet and learn from bankers.

During the workshop, you work on a variety of tasks including valuations, presentations and negotiations, which allow you to gain a better insight in a typical M&A process. I found that the banks had put a lot of effort in preparing the events, which showed that the IBC was just as important to them as it was to me.

Lazard is one of these leading investment banks and is continuously involved in well-known, industry-shaping M&A transactions. Moreover, as an independent M&A advisor, clients choose Lazard solely based on its advisory capabilities. As a result, building longstanding client relationships through continuous outperformance is a key focus of the firm, a matter that highly appeals to me.

With local offices in both Amsterdam and Brussels, and supported by a global network of resources, Lazard holds a leading position in the Benelux. This has been further confirmed over the past years, with Lazard having advised on numerous major (potential) transactions in the region. All these reasons made me very keen to do an internship at the Amsterdam office, and of course ultimately try to obtain a full-time position.

During my internship, I got exposure to the dynamics of different industries, performed a wide range of activities and gained insights into the different stages of an M&A process. The tasks I performed included assisting on pitches and management presentations, doing market studies and making (multiple-based) valuations amongst others. From the moment you start your internship, you immediately become an integrated part of the team. Now, speaking as an analyst, I can say that interns truly assist in completing my day-to-day tasks.

What surprised me most during my internship is the flat organization that Lazard has, meaning that as an intern you will not only work together with analysts and associates, but at times also with VPs, Directors and sometimes even Managing Directors. This is a great experience, and really makes you want to step up your game.

The IBC is a great event to get more insights into the world of M&A and to provide students with the opportunity to directly get in touch with bankers from the different firms. I believe that beyond the necessary theoretical knowledge, the key to obtaining an internship or a full-time position is showing genuine interest in the field. Finally, as Investment Banking is a demanding industry to work in, with continuous high performance being required despite long working hours, having a strong drive and dedication is equally important.