How to Become a Venture Capital Broker

Aug 12, 2018

Find out how to become a venture capital broker. Research the education requirements and learn about the experience you need to advance your career in finance. View article »

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Video Transcript

What Are Venture Capital Brokers?

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.

Career Requirements

Degree Level Bachelor's degree for entry-level positions
Degree Field Accounting, finance, economics, business, or other related field
Licensure and/or Certification Brokers must be licensed/registered with Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), voluntary certification available
Experience Experience required for advancement and certification; on-the-job training common
Key Skills Customer-service, math, and decision-making skills; attention to detail; initiative
Salary $71,550 (2015 median for all securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Statistics

Venture capital brokers have bachelor's degrees and master's degrees in accounting, finance, economics, business, or other related fields. They are expected to have skills in customer service, mathematics, and decision making, as well as the ability to pay attention to detail and show initiative. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for all securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents, which include venture capital brokers, was $71,550 in 2015.

Steps for Venture Capital Brokers

What do I need to do to be a venture capital broker?

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.

Success Tips

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 the options for professional certification. 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.

Venture capital brokers have bachelor's degrees and master's degrees. They are detail-oriented, with strong initiative, and their median annual salary is $71,550.

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