Jeffrey Maddox is a director of investment banking with BMO Capital Markets in Houston, Texas, where he has worked since 2019. Maddox joined the organization as a vice president in 2017. In May 2021, he joined BMO’s SPAC Advisory Practice after previously working in the energy department. SPAC stands for special purpose acquisition company, and SPAC transactions are a specialized industry within investment banking. Maddox’s extensive experience qualified him to serve in this role for BMO.
BMO Capital Markets is a well-known and well-respected global financial services firm. The corporation was founded more than 200 years ago in Canada and is still located in Toronto, with the Bank of Montreal as its parent company. BMO Capital Markets has offices in a number of key cities in the United States and around the world to support its corporate and investment banking, research, and advisory services.
Maddox was promoted to the SPAC Advisory Practice and director position as a result of his experience gained at BMO Capital Markets and in other capacities. Maddox works with target firms on the sell-side and SPACs on the buy-side in SPAC Advisory. This includes keeping in touch with SPAC’s management and sponsors on a regular basis.
Since 2017, Jeffrey Maddox has been at BMO Capital Markets. After two years as a vice president, he was promoted to director in December 2019, a position he still holds, along with the additional responsibilities of the transition to SPAC Advisory.
He formerly worked at Barclays Investment Bank as an associate and then as a vice president. He also worked for Clarkson Capital Markets in Houston for two years as an associate. He concentrated on the maritime and energy services specialty of investment banking in this position. After college, I worked as an analyst and associate at GulfStar Group in Houston, mostly offering sell-side investment, and as an audit associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers, a top business that provides audit, consultancy, and tax services through a global network of firms.
Jeffrey Maddox earned his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business. Maddox graduated with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a master’s degree in accounting in 2007.
Jeffrey Maddox earned his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business. Maddox graduated with a bachelor’s degree in accounting in 2007 and a master’s degree in accounting the following year. With frequent participation in sports and alumni events at the university, he maintains an active interest in his alma mater.
Although Jeffrey Maddox’s best skills are found in his chosen sector of investment banking, his years in the industry have allowed him to specialize in certain areas. Financial modeling, financial analysis, valuation, corporate finance, private equity, investments, due diligence, and financial reporting are among the most sought-after skills. He has extensive experience in the areas of corporate valuation, mergers & acquisitions, capital markets, audits, and strategic financial planning. His expertise in special purpose acquisition firms led to his promotion to BMO Capital Markets’ SPAC Advisory Practice.
His long career has given him a diverse set of skills in finance and investing, including industrials, real estate, renewable and traditional energy, healthcare, metals and mining, consumer, technology, and environmental sustainability. In addition to mergers and acquisitions, equity capital markets, and leveraged finance, he has over a decade of investment baking expertise.
Jeffrey Maddox has a persistent dedication to charitable giving and involvement, and he participates in philanthropic endeavors through a variety of organizations and organizations. Many people in Houston are focused on helping the homeless and underprivileged. He volunteers with Christ the King Presbyterian Church in Houston, Star of Hope, Small Steps, Source for Women, and Movember, which promotes men’s mental health awareness.
Star of Hope encourages good life changes through spiritual programs and gives Christ-centered community assistance to Houston’s homeless men, women, and children, while Small Steps operates two preschools for economically disadvantaged children and families. Source for Women strives to improve the quality of life for both women and children by providing free preventative medical care, pregnancy care, and holistic services to marginalized women in Houston.
Maddox also supports the Houston Food Bank’s purpose of distributing fresh produce, meat, and nonperishable food items to Houston-area families and individuals in need.
Jeffrey Maddox is a consistent supporter of the University of Texas at Austin’s athletic teams as well as the alumni association.
How did you get started in this business?
I got started in investment banking in January 2010 after beginning my career as a CPA at PwC. Shortly after I began at PwC it became clear to me that accounting was not what I wanted to do long-term. I always found finance to be interesting when I was in the business school at The University of Texas at Austin and decided it suited my interests better. I sat for the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) exam in order to prove my knowledge of finance and passed the first level before applying to finance jobs. In accounting, I felt removed from the strategy and key decisions of businesses, whereas in finance and investment banking the work was presented in boardrooms and involved key decisions. I found investment banking to be an unparalleled career to learn about business in.
How do you make money?
We are paid fees to provide financial advisory services to companies. Investment banks provide a range of services including raising capital through debt and equity offerings and merger & acquisition advisory. In my current role within BMO’s SPAC Advisory group, I provide merger & acquisition advisory services to companies looking to go public via a SPAC and also advise to SPACs looking to acquire companies.
How long did it take for you to become profitable?
Fortunately, most of my firms have been profitable every year that I have been in the industry. The one exception was a group I joined that was a start-up investment banking team within an established company. All other groups have been strong platforms that were able to leverage their brand and existing books of business to be highly successful.
When you were starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?
Early on when I was an analyst the hours were quite long and I had to make sacrifices in my personal life (80-100 hour weeks and almost always on the weekends). I didn’t think I would stay in investment banking for more than 2-3 years, but things became more manageable as I progressed and the job became more fulfilling. The hours of a junior banker can be very difficult and the juggling of various workstreams can be challenging and demanding. It takes a strong work ethic and a strong drive to keep your head above water and sustain high performance. When you move up the hours are still long. You spend less time at the office at 10 pm, but a lot more time on the road traveling. The work is more interesting and rewarding, and you spend much of your time talking to clients and helping shape key business decisions.
How did you get your first customer?
Through personal relationships with former colleagues, I was able to get hired. Many of my former colleagues have moved onto clients, both in the corporate world and in private equity. These companies are frequent clients of investment banks, and I have been fortunate to get hired by some of the folks I worked with previously. It’s important to treat people you work with well and pay it forward. Some of the people I have worked with that were junior to me have been highly successful and are now good fee payers.
What is one marketing strategy (other than referrals) that you’re using that works really well to generate new business?
It may be surprising, but cold calling and pitching your services can be effective and has been for me. Many people are reactive and sit back waiting for the business to come to them. That may work for the very largest and most well-known platforms, but for most, it is necessary and important to chase opportunities proactively. Cultivating and developing relationships over many hours of meetings, phone calls, and pitches is the key to winning clients.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?
Personal investment decisions have been a challenge over the last few months given the volatility in the market with supply chain disruptions, inflation, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Growth stocks have been very much out of favor with rising interest rates, while previously unpopular commodity-based stocks like those in the oil and gas sector have seen a significant run-up. Also, any commodity that is key to the energy transition value chain has seen significant growth. Trying to find the right time to play these themes has been challenging given uncertainty.
What do you think it is that makes you successful?
I think my determination, work ethic, and will to succeed are the keys to the success I have experienced to date in my career. Since I started out in a different industry and then lateraled into investment banking I took an unconventional path to where I am from most people that typically start directly in the industry or go and get an MBA (Master’s of Business Administration) to reset their career and then enter investment banking. I had to start out at a smaller firm and work my way up. The attributes of persuasion, perseverance, and work ethic were paramount to successfully working my way up to larger firms and higher positions over the past twelve years.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Getting promoted to Director a few years ago was the most satisfying career moment to date. Moving into this position gave me the opportunity and responsibility to begin leading the coverage effort of several clients and generate business and revenue for my firm. My next goal is to be promoted to managing director and I hope to one day lead a group of bankers.
What does the future hold for your business? What are you most excited about?
What are you most excited about? I expect my business to continue to grow and become stronger as I progress in my career and develop greater relationships. I’m excited about the opportunities for success that I see. As I mentioned previously, I hope to one day lead a successful team of bankers. I feel that my interpersonal skills and management style will work well with a larger group. I have always bonded well with my teams and junior bankers and think that I can build morale and help improve and grow a team.
What business books have inspired you?
Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. The Intelligent Investor. Who Moved My Cheese. I first read who moved my cheese when I was in high school and found it highly impactful for understanding the psychology and motivations of people. The Intelligent Investor is a great book and very insightful on Warren Buffett’s style. There aren’t many with a long-term track record like him. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People taught me the keys to success and self-improvement.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Have a longer-term view. Focus on where you want to be, not on where you are. It’s hard to get outside of the moment and here and now when you are stuck in a challenging environment that doesn’t seem to have a near end in sight. It is important to think about why you are putting in the time and where you are looking to go. I would also teach myself to be more disciplined at an earlier age as I think this would have helped me to focus and start down a different path towards my current career earlier on when I was in college.
Are you willing to be a mentor? If so, how should someone contact you?
Yes, I would be happy to be a mentor. I can be contacted through LinkedIn. I received great mentorship along the way when I was in college and throughout my career and am happy to provide that to others.