Experiencing Significant Milestones within a PE Firm

Name: Elijah Flomen

Year: Junior

Major: Economics

Minor: Business Institutions

CFS Class: Business Field Studies

Employer: Kinzie Capital Partners

This summer, I had the opportunity of interning at Kinzie Capital Partners, a start-up private equity fund specializing in lower middle market, retail and manufacturing companies. Kinzie is a fairly small team, only making up around six full-time employees. A major takeaway I had from my experience is the importance of timing. Especially in the field of finance, where most of the work is project-driven, internship experiences are heavily dependent on the current activities of the firm. During my interview with Kinzie, I asked my current boss what I should expect my daily tasks to look like. He, quite bluntly, told me that the work I would be doing largely depends on the deal flow of the firm. He added, that historically, the summer months have been the slowest, due to many people taking vacations as well the Chicago summer weather causing a slight dip in clients’ urgency to get projects closed.

Two months later, during my first day of the job, Kinzie closed their first ever fund, as well as entered into the final stages of what would be their largest acquisition – arguably two of the largest milestones this young company has faced since inception. From my first day at Kinzie, I realized how lucky I was to obtain such an internship experience at this specific time with the firm; I was excited to take full advantage of the exposure I was about to gain. I am grateful for the skills and lessons I was able to learn. I understood that no matter how much you may prepare for an interview or study for an exam, there will always be a factor of timing and luck that plays a major role in the success of your professional career. Although luck does play a large factor in determining one’s professional success, I am a firm believer of making your own luck and putting yourself into situations in which opportunities such as these are most likely to become a reality.