What is an Investment Banking Pitch Book

In investment banking, a pitch book is a marketing presentation intended to convince an existing or potential client to retain their firm for a deal. Pitch books typically contain sections on the merits of the transaction, an analysis of potential buyers or sellers, pricing and valuation information, and key risks to mitigate.

A well-tailored pitch book is a secret to bagging multi-million-dollar deals. Investment banking analysts and associates spend a significant amount of time working on pitch books, and any career in investment banking requires the ability to create pitch books and use them to pitch to prospective investors.

Key Learning Points

  • Investment banks create pitch books to market their business to clients. The goal is to be chosen by the client to handle a transaction such as buying or selling a company or raising capital.
  • A pitch book for an M&A transaction includes the target’s vision, mission, company overview, and business model.
  • Most investment banking pitch books are created in PowerPoint and fall into three categories: bank introductions, deal pitches, and management presentations.
  • Creating an investment banking pitch book requires significant preparation and meticulous attention to detail.

Types of Investment Banking Pitch books

There are several types of investment banking pitch books, differentiated depending on purpose and content. We can categorize them as one of three types:

  • Market Overviews/Bank Introduction: These are the pitch books used to introduce a bank to prospective clients. They can also be used to give clients updates. These decks include Information that will help create a favorable impression for potential clients, such as background and history, vision and mission, organizational structure, company size, recent achievements and successful deals, and a market overview/update.
  • Deal Pitch Book: These include two main types, which are buy-side and sell-side M&A pitchbooks. Debt insurance and IPOs also fall under this category. These decks include details that will present the deal and help potential clients understand how a bank proposes to undertake the work. This might include the following: market growth rate, relevant financial models, list of potential buyers, acquisition candidates, and financial sponsors with detailed descriptions (if applicable).
  • Management Presentations: These presentations are used to pitch clients to investors after the business is won. Important information about the client company is included, such as background, market overview, products and services, customers, organizational chart, financial performance, and expansion and growth opportunities.

Uses of Pitch Books

A pitch book is one of the most important tools that investment bankers use to help sell their services:

  • It acts as a marketing device and is used by all the investment banks worldwide.
  • It exemplifies valuable and comprehensive marketing material.
  • It acts as the starting point of the initial pitch or sales introduction for the investment bank when it is trying to seek new business.
  • It provides a deep analysis of a current or potential client and deal.
  • It offers the bank a chance to demonstrate why a client should choose them from a broad field of competitors.

An Inside Look at Investment Banking Pitch Books

In general, a pitch book is divided into 5 sections:

  • Market Update – Provides charts illustrating current capital markets conditions. This is the part of the pitch book that is intended to convince clients that now is the right time to carry out a transaction.
  • Credentials – Numerous biographies and league tables that show why the bank is the right choice.
  • Deal Outline – Gives a sense of what the deal would involve. It also provides other options to consider.
  • Considerations – Includes charts and tables exhibiting effects on EPS and any other potential problems. It’s important to read the footnotes in this section as potential problems are normally referred to as “execution” or “management”.
  • Appendix –This is a very important section as it includes models with a variety of scenarios.

How to Create a Pitch Book in Investment Banking

Creating an investment banking pitch book can be daunting. It requires careful preparation and attention to detail. Usually, the majority of the pages (especially in the Credentials and Market Update sections) can be lifted from an already-existing book with the names and financials changed.

Almost all investment banking pitch books use a structure similar to the following:

  • Situation, or “Current State”: Your prospective client is looking for growth.
  • Complication, or “Problem”: The potential client’s growth rate has been slowing.
  • Hypothesis, or “Solution”: Acquiring a growing company can meet the potential client’s need for growth.

Then, the deck goes into detail, showing why the hypothesis might be true – including why the bank’s team is qualified to lead the transaction, similar transactions the bank has led before, and the valuation this company can expect to receive.

Pitch books must be designed to impress prospective clients. Apart from the design, they must have a compelling message. It is therefore vital to have a clear message underpinning the pitch. There should also be a clear message on each slide.

Pitchbook Examples

You can learn a lot by looking at examples of pitch books that have been used successfully in the past. They will illustrate what kind of content and design elements work well with investors and potential clients.

Example 1: Goldman Sachs Pitchbook Airvana Go Private Deck

Goldman Sachs has a track record of creating successful pitchbooks. One of their pitch books was used to win Airvana’s business. In the investment presentation, they gave the company the codename Atlas. Goldman made the presentation to Atlas’ Special Committee, and they included many detailed company projections. This shows how fully they understood Airvana’s business and financial position. Goldman included a detailed analysis of several strategic alternatives in their pitchbook.

Example 2: Medley Management’s 3-way Merger with Medley Capital and Sierra Income

This is another excellent example. The pitchbook was prepared by Barclays when they were pitching to become the M&A advisor to Medley Management during its merger with Medley Capital and Sierra Income. It’s a 38 pager that features beautifully designed graphs, pie charts, and tables. These techniques and presentation styles made it easier for Barclays to communicate with its potential clients effectively.

Example 3: Sale of Rouse Properties to Brookfield Asset Management

This is a sell-side pitchbook prepared by Bank of America and presented to Rouse Properties. Brookfield later acquired the business. The presentation includes 58 slides and has an impressive, concise, and detailed executive summary.

Pitchbook Template

The purpose of the pitch book is to give a comprehensive overview of the investment bank. It contains details such as the number of analysts, previous IPO successes, and the average number of deals completed per year. It can also include information about the financial strengths of the bank and the range of services it offers to its clients.

Creating a pitch book is often time-consuming and challenging, but the process can be simplified by using a template. A pitch book template is a blueprint that contains layouts, colors, fonts, effects, background styles, and general content.

Get our free download of an outline of an investment banking pitch book


An investment banking pitch book is a structured PowerPoint presentation created to attract new businesses. The pitch describes why the bank is the best choice for a transaction. The deck would focus on products if used by an investment firm. For example, it could use graphs and comparisons to a suitable benchmark to demonstrate the merits of a portfolio. There isn’t one formulaic way to make an investment banking pitch book. Much of the work depends on various factors, such as company culture or who a bank is pitching to.

If you want to get the same training as new hires to the top 4 investment banks, and master accounting, financial modeling, valuation, plus M&A and LBO analysis, enroll on the Investment Banker online course.

Additional Resources

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