Our Values are our Culture
Our PEOPLE are our VALUE
I am delighted that you are considering joining
We Have a Culture of Genuine Mutual Respect.
BlueMountain Capital Management, LLC or one of
We recognize the value of, and actively encourage,
its affiliates. When Stephen Siderow and I started
diverse opinions. We insist on analytical rigor
BlueMountain, we founded it on the principles of
and intellectual honesty, but we donâ€™t tolerate
integrity, excellence, collaboration, and transparency.
disrespectfulness toward anyone inside or outside
These values enable us to provide outstanding results
of the firm.
for investors and a satisfying and challenging work environment for all of us.
We Treat Our Employees Well. We compete for the best talent just as we compete for opportunities in the
As we enter our second decade, I am reminded every day
market and for allocations from our fundsâ€™ investors.
that these values lie at the core of our success to date,
We pay our highest performing talent at the top of
and form the foundation for our investment in the future.
the market, we offer an exceptional array of benefits
Our commitment to these values is the primary reason
(featured elsewhere in this brochure), and we are always
you should want to be part of that future. Let me
searching for ways to take care of our employees and
elaborate on what makes BlueMountain special.
We Have No Silos and Reward Collaboration.
Our Best Years are Ahead of Us. While we are fortunate
The leadership team is largely compensated based
to have enjoyed considerable success since our founding,
on partnership stakes in the firm and, therefore, on the
I believe our best years are yet to come. Tectonic shifts
performance of the firm overall, not on individual PnL.
in our industry are fostering enormous opportunities
No one at the firm is compensated formulaically.
for a sophisticated player like BlueMountain.
For non-partners, discretionary compensation is awarded each year based on contributions to the
I hope the following will give you a sense of the unique
overall success of the firm. We recognize contributions
opportunities of a career at BlueMountain.
to lasting value as well as to current year results. Very truly yours, We Prize Our Reputation for Integrity. We insist on transparency, fair dealing, and intellectual integrity in all that we do. Our investors demand it, our regulators demand it, and perhaps most importantly, we demand it of ourselves.
Andrew Feldstein, CEO/CIO
BlueMountain was founded on the principles of collaboration, integrity, transparency, and excellence. We believe these values enable us to provide outstanding results for investors and a satisfying and challenging work environment.
Collaboration We believe strongly in the power of collaboration. It is our view that diversity of thought and cross-firm collaboration lead to the best outcomes for our investors and the most enriching workplace. We expect our employees to collaborate not just with those in their particular functions, but also with a broad array of employees from every sector of the firm. Senior management actively engages with the most junior employees, recognizing that they often have valuable insight that might be overlooked at more hierarchical organizations. This collaboration is an important determinant of an employee’s success at the firm, and we reward those who embody this trait.
Integrity As we grow, we are laser focused on preserving and institutionalizing the distinct culture that gives us our competitive advantage. There are many attributes that create an organization’s culture. We can boil ours down to one word: Integrity. We demand that our employees conduct themselves with the highest standards of honesty, fairness, and principled conduct. Fortunately it’s a simple standard: Follow the Golden Rule. It’s the right thing to do. And it’s good business.
Transparency We measure ourselves against three straightforward criteria: deliver sustainable risk adjusted returns that meet or exceed investor expectations, protect investor downside with high integrity risk management, and provide investors with the transparency and analysis needed to make high quality decisions. To achieve these measures, we encourage and facilitate open lines of communication among employees at all levels of our firm toward clients, counterparties, colleagues, regulators, and all market participants.
Excellence We are committed to the highest standards of quality across all parts of our organization: investment process, risk management, operations, technology, and client services. This commitment is not ornamental or superficial. We are passionate about excellence in every aspect of our business. As we grow, preserving our culture of integrity requires that we clearly communicate and model the core principles; thoughtfully design incentives, frameworks, and policies; carefully hire and integrate new people; and smartly leverage technology to support our goals.
Trust leads to Collaboration, collaboration leads to innovation, innovation leads to results, and results lead to Renewed Trust
CULTURE “There is low
overhead and low bureaucracy
in what we do every day, and that is what I love about being here.” —Axel Kramer, Co-head Quantitative Strategy
BlueMountainâ€™s culture is collegial and based upon respect, collaboration, and integration. We embrace diverse thinking and initiatives at all levels; we also recognize and reward vision and execution. Our employees are given the latitude to take responsibility and the empowerment to flourish. We value intellect, initiative, problem solving, and identification of future opportunities. BlueMountain seeks those who are motivated to initiate ideas, challenge the status quo, and develop and implement solutions.
Jes Staley joined BlueMountain in February 2013 as a Managing Partner. Prior to joining BlueMountain, Jes spent over 30 years at J.P. Morgan where he
Why I Joined Jes Staley What attracted you to BlueMountain? Well, first the culture of BlueMountain. The standards set by the Managing Partners were very evident the moment I started spending some time here, from Andrew on down: the integrity, the transparency, and the collaborative nature of the firm. I think the second is a belief that there is a structural shift occurring in the financial markets as regulators respond to the financial crisis of 2008, and particularly in the credit markets. The investment side’s role is going to grow significantly as banks de-risk and as the credit markets become even more idiosyncratic than they have been in the past. And so BlueMountain, with its risk management systems, its investment expertise, and financial wherewithal, will be a significant player as that structural shift occurs. You said on CNBC that BlueMountain is the New York Yankees of the hedge fund manager space, even though you’re from Boston. No offense taken, but what did you mean? Well, I’m a Sox fan, so it was tough for me to use that metaphor. When I was with J.P. Morgan, one of the great pleasures of working for that institution was its reputation for integrity and its upright character. I think that BlueMountain has the same reputation for integrity and character, and I think the people who work here realize that they’re working for a very special institution. And so, while it’s tough for me to admit, there’s a history, legacy, and a certain pride in the Yankee pinstripes. And BlueMountain has the same reputation in the alternative investment space.
was the CEO of J.P. Morgan’s Investment Bank and CEO of J.P. Morgan Asset Management. He holds a B.A. in Economics from Bowdoin College.
You are part of what might be called a great migration of talent from the sell side to the buy side. What wisdom would you impart on someone considering making the same move that you did? One of the things that I liked about the buy side (or the investment side) and I felt this when I was over in the asset management business at J.P. Morgan, is that there’s a really attractive symmetry between what our clients want us to do and what we want to do. We really have a very simple business model, which is to attempt to deliver the risk-adjusted returns that our clients expect, and we are not an intermediary. We work for our limited partners. And the only thing that matters is we safely and intelligently invest the wealth that they entrust to us. So, I think there’s almost simplicity in the fiduciary function, which I think is very attractive to the buy side. Could you talk a little bit about what you think are some of the defining attributes of BlueMountain’s people? It does go back, first and foremost, to integrity, transparency, and collaboration. Institutional investors that I’ve known for many, many years that have now become investors with BlueMountain comment that the transparency and the clarity with which we describe what we do is best in class. We do a lot of very complex transactions, and I think we have earned and developed a reputation for working with high levels of confidentiality, and doing so fairly with everyone who touches BlueMountain. What do you enjoy doing in your free time? I enjoy sailing and hanging out with my kids. We have a boat that was built in Maine and so we like sailing in New England.
Our Approach Ethan Auerbach How would you describe our investment process?
What do you view as BlueMountain’s competitive edge in investing?
Our investment ideas are generated by studying disruptive trends in various industries or by evaluating securities and asset classes that we believe are subject to forced or irrational behavior. Ideas are pursued collaboratively between Research Analysts and Portfolio Managers. Investment theses are refined over time, and our positions change over time as our understanding evolves.
Our largely unconstrained capital base allows us a unique opportunity to invest in the best risk/reward situations. We benefit from a high number of talented and independent thinkers evaluating a broad universe of investable ideas. We unlock our employees’ potential through our collaborative environment where individuals are rewarded for making good decisions and helping others do the same.
How does it differ from other investment processes you’ve experienced?
How do you like BlueMountain as a place to work?
Our process is highly collaborative between the portfolio management and research teams. We don’t suffer from a “pitch” mentality—decisions are made jointly between Research Analysts and Portfolio Managers; responsibility for good and bad decisions is shared. Open and frequent communication on all aspects of evolving ideas is essential.
This is a great place to work; a very positive attitude permeates the firm. People work here because they want to.
What is the role of the Portfolio Manager in the investment process? The PM’s role depends on the type of investment, but PMs are thought partners with Research Analysts in terms of how to value and diligence investments.
Ethan Auerbach, a Partner in the firm, is a Portfolio Manager focusing on Distressed strategies. Prior to BlueMountain, he was a Distressed Analyst at Marathon Asset Management. Ethan graduated from Cornell University with a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Economics.
Noam Leslau, a Partner in the firm, is a Managing Director on the Investor Relations, Marketing & Strategy team, resident in the firm’s London office. Prior to joining BlueMountain, Noam was a consultant at McKinsey & Company. He holds an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a B.A. in
What Sets Us Apart Noam Leslau
History and Economics from Stanford University.
You started as a junior employee at BlueMountain and have ascended the ranks being elected to the partnership. What qualities do you think are most highly valued here?
The London office has a reputation for a collegial, familial environment. You have worked in both London and New York. How would you characterize the tenor of the London office?
Openness to new ideas and a readiness to embrace change, intellectual rigor and honesty, collaboration and teamwork. I think these three factors are important at BlueMountain at all levels of the organization. One feature I have always appreciated about BlueMountain is the flat structure of the organization and the expectation that ideas will be considered—and challenged —from and by everyone here.
I think employees in both the London and New York offices strike a good balance between professional and personal lives. We are all very driven at work but also value family and children, for example. The difference between London and New York is mostly the size of the office. London has a smaller office and therefore feels a bit more close-knit, not unlike our New York office when I joined the firm nine years ago.
BlueMountain touts collaboration between groups. What groups beside your own do you work with most frequently?
Tell me about what sets BlueMountain apart from its competitors. Why should someone with multiple job offers join BlueMountain?
My group interacts with virtually all parts of our business. I would say we have the most frequent contact with Portfolio Managers, Research, and Risk professionals in order to understand the portfolios and specific trades. We interact daily with Legal and Accounting, who are instrumental in helping us onboard and service investors. We often work on marketing to prospective investors for many months or even years during which all of these groups have important roles. All in all, there is an incredible amount of daily collaboration. I would say that the openness and mutual support is a distinctive feature of the firm.
When I joined BlueMountain, I was looking for a job. Instead I got a career. I think what sets us apart is our ability to develop people as we grow the firm, providing incredible opportunities at all levels of the organization. While we are a large and established firm, we have kept the “young and hungry” spirit of a start-up venture. In other words, BlueMountain is a place that affords new hires the kinds of chances you might get in a more entrepreneurial environment with the infrastructure of an institutional asset manager. If you want to evolve and grow over the long term, I think the opportunities here are unrivaled.
Developing a Career Here Ami Dogra How has BlueMountain invested in and supported your professional growth over the last seven years? My last seven years at BlueMountain have been more valuable and more impactful than any of my years of experience prior to joining the firm. Never before have I been challenged as hard and pushed as far outside of my intellectual comfort zone. The firm is a highly elaborate network of the best of the best. But an important point is that these highly intelligent people are some of the best teachers I have ever had, and learning from them has contributed immensely to my professional and personal growth. BlueMountain continually invests in its training programs, resources, and infrastructure to arm its employees with the necessary tools to solve problems, think creatively, and have a differentiated view. BlueMountain supports mobility both within and between departments. When I expressed the desire to expand my role beyond loans, the firm supportively added coverage of the retail and consumer sectors to my list of responsibilities. What three traits do you think are essential to someone succeeding at BlueMountain? I think it’s extremely difficult to narrow it down to three traits but I’ll give it a try. A successful employee at BlueMountain has to be analytical but
Ami Dogra is a Research Analyst in the Leveraged Loan Group. Ami is also responsible for covering the retail and consumer service sectors. Prior to joining the firm, Ami was a Senior High Yield Analyst at Seix Investment Advisors. Ami holds a bachelor’s degree from Barnard College, Columbia University.
creative, a self-starter who strives for excellence and is excited by the next challenge, and someone who is direct and decisive. BlueMountain is rigorously quantitative but values thinking outside of the box to find answers and solutions. I believe success at BlueMountain requires a strong sense of ownership of work amidst a collaborative framework. What has it been like being a working mom at BlueMountain? BlueMountain’s culture of flexibility and mutual trust and respect for its employees is unparalleled. The firm’s approach to work/life balance has allowed me to flourish into a more productive, organized, and gratified full-time employee and working mother. The firm really does want its employees to be fulfilled both inside and outside of work, with a deep understanding of how precious flex time can be for working moms. Not only does the flexible schedule allow me to be more efficient and organized with the use of my time, it gives me precious moments with my son since I save hours in commuting. Additionally, the firm’s robust technological infrastructure allows me to be extremely connected to the office at all times. BlueMountain’s level of commitment to working mothers is a true testament to the firm’s extraordinary and differentiated culture.
Timothy Valz is a Research Analyst focusing on distressed credit. Prior to joining BlueMountain, Timothy was a Research Analyst at Anchorage Capital Group, with a focus on special situations. Timothy holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Vanderbilt University.
Our Investment Process Timothy Valz How does our investment process differ from other investment processes you’ve experienced? The investment process at BlueMountain tends to be extremely nimble, with the ability to react quickly to developments and adapt to new information. A continuous and relentless focus on risk and maximizing risk-adjusted returns allows for creative trade construction through the use of options, derivatives, and various commodity and rate hedges that expand the universe of investments. What is the role of the Research Analyst in the investment process? How collaborative is it? The Research Analyst’s role is to generate investable ideas and develop trade recommendations. We perform detailed research both at the industry and company levels in order to generate differentiated views, overlaying those views with security analysis to identify attractive trade opportunities. The investment process is highly collaborative as Research works directly with Portfolio Management to determine the relative attractiveness of various positions and to optimize trade construction.
What do you view as BlueMountain’s competitive edge in investing? BlueMountain’s systematic approach to risk management and its flexible mandate provide a number of competitive advantages. The dynamic investment process enables the firm to take advantage of numerous market, asset class, and security dislocations, enhancing returns without increasing risk. What brought you here? BlueMountain provided an opportunity to further develop my core skillset (fundamental company, industry, and macro analysis), expanding my abilities in relative valuation, security analysis, and risk and effective hedging. The lack of hierarchy and the integration across the team were highly appealing characteristics that differentiated BlueMountain and further drew me to the firm.
Our Collaborative Platform Axel Kramer Why did you choose to work at BlueMountain instead of other organizations? It was really a combination of three factors that made me want to work at BMCM: (1) I wanted to get a quick feedback loop that allowed me to iterate technology based on its usage, (2) I have tremendous respect for everyone here, and (3) there were interesting technical challenges in building a system from the ground up.
What advice would you give other technologists as they consider the array of career options and types of employment opportunities available to them? I am with Joseph Campbell here: follow your bliss. Do something that you really enjoy doing—do it deep, stretch, drive to completion, and do it with people you like. A fulfilling career will follow out of that. Understand how your risk tolerance and desire for innovation or stability are aligned with the organization you want to join.
You’ve worked in several different types of organizations—high-tech, consulting, and banking among others. How would you describe BlueMountain’s culture in comparison with these other cultures?
What makes BlueMountain’s approach to the use of technology distinctive from other investment organizations?
The culture here is end to end, interactive, and cross-functional. Everybody in Quant Strat works closely with professionals in other disciplines across the firm. That is very attractive and different from many other organizations.
Like all organizations that excel in technology, BlueMountain keeps a very open mind on new technologies to see where we can benefit. We are not afraid to make mistakes and then iterate on them; and we have a very good team of people.
Axel Kramer is a Partner in the firm and Co-Head of Quantitative Strategy. Prior to joining BlueMountain, he was an Architect in the Windows client platform group at Microsoft. Axel holds an M.Sc. in Computer Science from the Technical University of Berlin and completed his doctoral studies at the University of Washington, Seattle, and the GMD, Bonn/Germany.
Linda Dao is an Equity Trade Support Analyst. Prior to joining the firm, she worked at Deutsche Bank as an Equity Derivatives Middle Office Associate. Linda
Why I Like Working Here Linda Dao Why did you choose to work at BlueMountain instead of other organizations? I wanted to work in an organization that challenges me. At BlueMountain, I have great exposure to the markets and I work alongside very smart individuals from whom I can both learn from and grow with. Hard work is recognized, which makes all the effort worth it. BlueMountain is a growing firm, and I enjoy the challenge that the growth presents. How would you describe the culture? Because of the nature of the business, it is always very busy which I find very exciting. The company does a very good job integrating new employees into the firm and continuously enhancing the culture to make the environment enjoyable to work in. Management is constantly finding ways to preserve our unique culture, which is dynamic, fun, and fast-paced.
attended Rutgers University, where she received her Bachelor of Science degree.
What do you like most about the firm? I really like the culture, work ethic, and the smart people I get to interact with daily. I love that the CEO of the company knows his employees well and makes all of us feel like real people. I know BlueMountainâ€™s standards are very high, so I appreciate that the firm takes pride in hiring personnel to maintain its unique culture. I also appreciate that BlueMountain pushes its employees to grow and advance.
Forging New Territory Charles Kobayashi What do you think makes BlueMountain such a distinctive place to work?
Can you talk about what it means to be leading the new office?
BMCM’s focus is on collaboration and teamwork, where talented individuals join together to achieve results as a team. BMCM has a unique culture where Portfolio Managers, Research Analysts, and Quantitative Analysts collaborate on maximizing returns. BMCM encourages cross-function dialogue and our flat structure allows for the consistent exchange of ideas among peers.
For BMCM it is important to have a presence in Asia, and the Tokyo office will allow us to cover credit, equity, and risk around the clock. We will explore opportunities and values in Asia and it is an important step in becoming a global multi-strategy alternative asset manager. There will be multiple challenges and it is exciting to be able to lead that effort.
What brought you to BlueMountain? I joined BMCM to start the loan and CLO businesses. BMCM was focused on credit derivatives and correlation and it was an opportunity to bring my experience to grow BMCM’s fundamental business. The concept of integrating credit derivatives, structured products, and fundamental strategies was an intriguing challenge.
Charles Kobayashi, a Partner in the firm, is a Portfolio Manager focusing on loans and CLOs and is the Chief Executive Officer of BlueMountain’s Japanese affiliate. He holds an M.B.A. in Finance from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry/Molecular Biology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Zeynep Tumer is an Investor Relations, Marketing, and Strategy Associate in London. Prior to joining BlueMountain, Zeynep worked at Citigroup in European Leveraged Finance and Emerging Markets Debt Capital
Why I Choose to Work Here Zeynep Tumer
The London office has a reputation for a collegial, familial environment. How would you characterize the tenor of the London office? The London office indeed has a very closely-knit environment. Everybody is very accessible and approachable, which makes the learning process very easy for new starters. It also increases communication across the different teams, which is particularly useful for Investor Relations, Marketing, and Strategy in terms of keeping up with the latest from the investment side. Can you speak to the core value of collaboration at BlueMountain both in London and with New York? Collaboration is a key feature of the culture at BlueMountain. It is very important in leveraging different areas of expertise across the firm to capitalize on opportunities and lead innovation in the market. By having team members across the BlueMountain platform share ideas together and evaluate opportunities through different lenses, we are able to capture attractive trades. What advice would you give to someone considering working at BlueMountain? BlueMountain is a great place to grow, work with very high-caliber people in their respective areas of expertise, and really have access to vast
Markets. She holds a Bachelor of Science Economics degree from The London School of Economics and Political Science.
amounts of information, experience, and opportunity across the firm. Someone considering working at BlueMountain needs to be ready to make the best of this experience, be very motivated to think outside the box, and have confidence to share and develop new ideas while using the resources around him/her to learn and form a good knowledge base. Another important aspect of working at BlueMountain is the flexibility provided to steer your career in the way you would like it to go, as long as you illustrate the hard work, motivation, and skills required to do something else at the firm. Describe your experience selling a complex portfolio to sophisticated investors. What resources has BlueMountain provided you in an effort to best position you for success? From a knowledge standpoint, BlueMountain has vast resources that are available to everyone across the firm that makes the learning experience a repeatable and scalable process across different areas of expertise. The Risk, PM, and Research teams were helpful in my training, ensuring I was prepared to engage with investors quickly and impactfully.
Senior Management Style
“One of the unique attributes of upper management here is the
notable absence of hubris, which helps everyone at the firm get to the right answer without having to worry about offending this person or paying fealty to that person’s agenda. It is one of the defining characteristics of our firm, and it imbues everything that we do.” —Paul Friedman, Head of US Legal
“ One of the greatest advantages of working at BMCM personally has been the access to senior leadership in the firm. It is a very effective way of getting up the learning curve quickly.” —Zeynep Tumer, Associate, Investor Relations, Marketing, and Strategy
Accessibility of Senior Management
International Presence BlueMountain has a global presence with offices in New York, London, and Tokyo. We encourage our employees to spend time with their colleagues in all of these locations and find that the unique culture we established in our New York headquarters thrives in all of our outposts. BlueMountain also has a highly diverse investor base with some of our largest clients located across the globe in Canada, China, Europe, Japan, the Middle East, and the United States.
BlueMountain will open new spaces in London and New York in 2014, and it opened its Tokyo office in 2013. In designing these spaces, BlueMountain has placed paramount importance on what we consider to be our most valuable asset—our employees. While designing the New York office, the process was dictated by a desire to create an environment that encourages collaboration. Taking a cue from the technology sector, we have provided multiple soft seating areas to allow our employees to collaborate in a relaxed, informal environment. We have provided multiple private “phone booths” to allow our employees to concentrate, and every exposed column in our space is wrapped in white board glass. We also understand the importance of maintaining a healthy work-life balance, and so have provided a bike room and on-site showers to accommodate our more fitness-oriented employees.
BlueMountain Women’s Network The BlueMountain Women’s Network was established in 2008 to cultivate relationships for women within the firm by facilitating discussions of female professionals in the financial industry. Since 2011, the Women’s Network has taken a formalized approach to networking and development and has three goals: 1. Find women mentors internally and externally 2. Enhance communication skills 3. Continue to develop stronger bonds between the women in the firm through periodic social events Some of our previous events have included a private tour of the Museum of Modern Art; various skill-building workshops on topics such as building your personal brand, negotiation skills, and the professional impact of personal style; and volunteering at a charity benefitting women’s causes. The BlueMountain Women’s Network is led by the senior women in the firm with input from women at all levels and in all types of roles within the organization.
Investing in our people At BlueMountain we believe our people are our greatest assets. To further develop our people we believe in providing them ample opportunities to enhance their knowledge and skillset. We frequently offer opportunities for employees to continue their development by leveraging our internal resources and engaging with third-party providers. Some examples of the types of training offered include: + In-house sessions with external subject matter experts + Internally developed seminars and discussions + In-depth courses: Fixed Income and Credit Markets Overview, Credit Derivatives, Workshops, Financial Engineering (Masterâ€™s Level Course) + Coaching: Executive Communication and Presentation skills; Managerial and Leadership
BENEFITS BlueMountain provides one of the most unique and comprehensive benefits programs. + Fully-paid premiums for you and your dependents for medical, dental, and vision coverage
+ “We Reward Great People” special gifts or gift certificates for extraordinary contributions to the firm
+ Generous paid time off and sick days
+ Charitable matching program
+ Generous fully-paid maternity and paternity leave
+ Free annual on-site flu-shots, skin cancer screenings,
+ Casual Friday dress code and business casual attire every other day of the week + Resources to help you obtain additional life insurance coverage, financial planning, and trust and estate planning services + Women’s Network + Working Mother’s Network
and biometrics screenings + On-site bike room (NY) + On-site shower facilities (NY) + New hires lunches/dinners with members of senior management + Fully-stocked pantry with an assortment of healthy breakfast options and snacks on a daily basis
+ Concierge services for new parents
+ Weekly catered lunch series
+ Ample allotment of backup child and elder care coverage,
+ Monthly celebration of employee birthdays
including in-home care, all at no cost to the employee
+ Ad hoc parties/celebrations throughout the year
Our Values are our Culture
Our PEOPLE are our VALUE bluemountaincareers.com
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