Should I Become a Venture Capital Broker?
Venture capital brokers are financial experts and advisers who assist companies in accessing the necessary start-up capital to fund product development and new business ventures. Working as a venture capital broker can be highly stressful and very lucrative. Most brokers work more than 40 hours a week and their schedules include evenings and weekends. Time is spent meeting with potential investors, companies, and financial institutions as well as collaborating with brokerages. Many brokers live in New York City.
|Degree Level||Bachelor's degree required for entry-level positions|
|Degree Field||Accounting, finance, economics, business or other related field|
|Licensure and/or Certification||Brokers are required to be licensed (registered) with Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), voluntary professional certification is available|
|Experience||Experience required for advancement and professional certification, on-the-job training common|
|Key Skills||Customer-service, math and decision-making skills as well as the ability to pay attention to detail and show initiative|
|Salary||$72,070 per year (Median salary from May 2014 for all securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Statistics
Step 1: Earn a Bachelor's Degree
Although many employers place the highest value on self-motivation and intuitive thinking when seeking venture capital brokers, a bachelor's degree is also extremely important since it increases a candidate's financial and economic knowledge. Coursework emphasizing accounting, communication and general business studies is recommended. Job competition in this field is extremely high, and those with the strongest educational background generally have the greatest likelihood of success. Available related programs include the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Accounting, B.S. in Finance, B.S. in Financial Economics and Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) with a major in accounting,
Step 2: Gain Work Experience in Sales or Other Financial Services
Various paths of training and experience exist to assist one in becoming a venture capital broker. Frequently, prospective brokers begin their careers as sales assistants. Some individuals enter into a broker training program immediately, while others transition from other sales or financial occupations in different industries, utilizing previous contacts to ensure a successful start at acquiring initial clients. Regardless of the chosen path to becoming a venture capital broker, new employees generally receive extensive training in specific products, profitable trades and other financial principles.
Step 3: Become Registered
Venture capital brokers who handle the securities affairs for their company are required to register with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). The Series 7 exam is required for all brokers and general securities representatives. This exam consists of 250 multiple choice questions divided into two sections. Completion enables the candidate to buy and sell all securities products. Additional certification exams may be necessary for specific positions and promotions.
- Expand contacts and stay alert to changing industry trends. The success of venture capital brokers directly correlates with their ability to keep up with the continued entrepreneurial drive evident in the American economy. Venture capital brokers must strive to increase their client base, both in size and wealth. The number and success rate of clients coincides with the earning power the broker can achieve.
- Research options for becoming professional certified. Although not required, pursuing professional certification, such as the Certified Business Broker credential, can be beneficial. These types of certification may be preferred by employers, and earning them may also help with advancement.
Step 4: Consider Earning a Master's Degree for Career Advancement
Many individuals who work in this industry find that obtaining a master's degree can lead to increased opportunities for advancement as well a higher salary. Related programs include the Master of Business Administration or Master of Finance.