NYU Stern School of Business | Groups



2020 NYU Stern MBA Credit Pitch Competition

2020 Sponsors:
T. Rowe Price Foundation Grants $2.7 Million To Promote Social Good In  Baltimore | Diversity Best Practices
Capital Group Named A Best Place to Work by Glassdoor

Rules of the Investment Pitch

  • The competition will be held virtually on Thursday, November 19th
  • There is no entry fee


Rules of the Investment Pitch

  1. Credit or credit-based securities only. This can include corporate and government bonds, treasuries, and derivatives such as callable bonds and convertible bonds
  2. Specific debt focused instrument and not the company/entity in general
  3. The investment idea (buy/sell/hold) and thesis must be based on the fundamental analysis of the credit assessment of the entity
  4. Please use the Stern specific template (will be emailed out to participants)
  5. Each team must submit a PowerPoint presentation supporting their analysis by 11:59 PM ET on Tuesday, November 17th, 2020. There is no minimum/maximum number of slides.


2020 Keynote Speaker: Edward Altman


Edward I. Altman is the Max L. Heine Professor of Finance, Emeritus at the Stern School of Business, New York University. He is the Director of Research in Credit and Debt Markets at the NYU Salomon Center for the Study of Financial Institutions. Prior to serving in his present position, Professor Altman chaired the Stern School's MBA Program for 12 years. Dr. Altman was named to the Max L. Heine endowed professorship at Stern in 1988 and his Emeritus status in September 2015


Format of the Competition

  • Schools: The 12 teams represented at the competition will be divided into three Cohorts for the preliminary round. You can find details about each pool below.
  • Preliminary Round: 10min Presentation & 10min Q&A. Teams within the same Cohort can watch other participant presentations. To facilitate the event, we ask that all teams join their designated Zoom meeting when the round commences at 10AM ET.
  • Final Round: 10min Presentation & 15min Q&A. Top teams from each Cohort will present. Results will be announced after the keynote. Open to all non-competing participants.
  • Prizes: SIMR will award $1,000 to the winning team and $500 for the second place.


Day schedule

Please note Zoom links for each event will be provided in the days leading up to the competition.

Time (Eastern Time)






Registration & Breakfast


9:45 – 10:00 AM

Competition Welcome


Preliminary Round


Cohort A

Cohort B

Cohort C

10:00 – 10:20 AM

Chicago Booth

UCLA Anderson

Notre Dame Mendoza

10:25 – 10:45 AM

NYU Stern

Wharton A
(SL, WS, BW)

Cornell Johnson

10:50 – 11:10 AM

UNC Kenan-Flager

UVA Darden

Wharton B 
(DM, BM, BG)

11:15 – 11:35 AM

[Time Block]

[Time Block]

Yale SOM


Lunch Break


11:35 – 12:30 PM



12:30 – 1:15 PM

Keynote Speaker

Prof. Edward Altman


1:15 – 1:30 PM

First Round Results






Final Round


1:30 – 1:55 PM

Cohort A Finalist


2:00 – 2:25 PM

Cohort B Finalist


2:30 – 2:55 PM

Cohort C Finalist


2:55 – 3:15 PM





3:15 PM

Winner Announcement & Closing Remarks



Judging Criteria


Presentation (20%):

  • Communication skills (10%): Students are able to communicate their ideas effectively in a clear and concise manner. Team members coordinate well with each other and form a united group.
  • Presentation material (10%): Presentation material supports the investment thesis effectively with a professional look.

Investment Thesis (80%)

  • Strength of Investment Thesis (35%): Students propose compelling arguments to justify their investment recommendation.
  • Students have introduced differentiated research (20%): Investment thesis includes elements demonstrating students have looked beyond usual industry data to support investment thesis.
  • Valuation Technique (20%): The calculation of the target price is based on valid valuation techniques and assumptions.
  • Risks (5%): Students understand the major risks of their investment thesis.


Competition Judges

Mitch Unger
Senior Credit Analyst | T Rowe Price 

Mitch Unger is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc., and a corporate credit analyst in the Fixed Income Division, covering health care and pharmaceutical companies. Prior to joining T. Rowe Price in 2018, he was a senior research analyst at Nuveen, TIAA Investments. Before that, he was a product control analyst at JP Morgan. Mitch earned a B.S. in business administration from the University of Pittsburgh and an M.B.A. from New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business.

Andrew Dialynas
Fixed Income Investment Analyst | Capital Group

Andrew Dialynas is a fixed income investment analyst at Capital Group with research responsibility for senior living in the municipal bond sector. He has nine years of investment industry experience and has been with Capital Group for two years. Prior to joining Capital, Andrew worked as a vice president at Jefferies. Before that, he was an associate at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. He holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of business and a bachelor's degree in economics from Pomona College. Andrew is based in Los Angeles.

Mark Kronfeld
Managing Director, Global Head of Restructuring | BlackRock

Mark Kronfeld is a Managing Director at BlackRock and a member of the global credit platform.  Mark is the Global Head of Restructuring and serves on BlackRock’s Global Credit Oversight Committee.  In addition to oversight of workouts and restructurings across the global credit platform, Mark also focuses on special situations and distressed investments, private credit, and complex credit opportunities.  

Mark has over 25 years' experience with a strong record of success in special situations and distressed investing across the capital structure, in both public and private markets.  Prior to joining BlackRock as part of its acquisition of Tennenbaum Capital Partners (TCP), he was a managing director at TCP, a partner/portfolio manager at Plymouth Lane Capital, a managing director at BlueMountain Capital, a partner at Owl Creek Asset Management, and a senior analyst at Aurelius Capital.  As an investor, Mark has led numerous ad hoc and official creditor committees in corporate, municipal, and sovereign restructurings across the world.  

Before his career in finance, Mark practiced law as a litigator and a bankruptcy attorney.  He also served as a prosecutor in New York City, where he investigated and prosecuted cases involving, among other things, complex white-collar crime, arson, organized crime, and murder, achieving a 100% jury trial conviction rate.

Mark is a highly regarded restructuring and workout expert and a frequent lecturer, panelist, author, and guest speaker on distressed investing, bankruptcy, restructuring, and the credit markets.  He is an adjunct assistant professor at NYU's Stern School of Business where he co-teaches Corporate Bankruptcy and Reorganization.  He also serves as a lecturer at Columbia Business School where he teaches Distressed Value Investing.  Mark has also served as an adjunct professor at Boston University School of Law where he has taught Introduction to Financial Restructuring.  He is an active member of the Turnaround Management Association as well as the American Bankruptcy Institute where he served as a member of the advisory committee for ABI's Commission to Study the Reform of Chapter 11, which submitted its 2014 Final Report and Recommendations to Congress.

Mark earned his MBA in Finance from NYU's Stern School of Business and his JD from Boston University School of Law where he was an Edward F. Hennessey Scholar.  He received his B.A. (Dean's List) from the State University of New York at Albany.

Michael Kerlan
Head of Research | Credit Capital Investments

Michael Kerlan is Head of Research at CCI. He is also responsible for the Communication Services sector for the THF and Indus.

 Prior to joining CCI, Mike worked at Wells Fargo Securities, LLC in the Equity Research Group following the Communications Technology sector. He previously worked at Moody’s Investor Services, in the Corporate Credit Group, where he followed Technology, Media, and Telecom. Earlier in his career, Mike worked as a network engineer at International Paper, DoubleClick, and TD Waterhouse.

Mike completed a Bachelor of Engineering in Electrical Engineering at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, where he graduated cum laude, and a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering at the University of Florida in Gainesville, FL, where he completed a thesis titled, “Video Broadcast and Conferencing – A Performance Study and Traffic Characterization”. Mike also completed a Master of Business Administration with a specialization in Quantitative Finance at New York University, where he was a Stern Scholar.

Rick W.Liu
Senior Portfolio Manager | HSBC Global Asset Management

Rick W. Liu is a Senior Portfolio Manager on the Global and US Credit team at HSBC Global Asset Management, based in New York. He is the lead portfolio manager for all US and global multi-credit and total return credit strategies, helping the team manage over $25bn in credit assets under management. He also is a member of the firm's global credit allocation committee.
He joined HSBC Global Asset Management New York in 2005 as a Credit Analyst on the Distressed Opportunities investment team and moved to the US Credit team in 2011 with a primary focus on high yield credit. Prior to joining HSBC Asset Management, Mr. Liu was part of the Global Analyst rotational program of HSBC in Hong Kong and London. Previously, he had performed internships at HSBC and at Credit Suisse in corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions. He has been working in the industry since 2003. Mr. Liu holds a BCom(Hons) in Finance from the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia and is a CFA Charterholder.

Sachin Sarnobat 
Managing Director | Atalaya Capital

Sachin Sarnobat has extensive experience investing in opportunistic and special situations across public and private credit. Sachin is a Managing Director with Atalaya Capital Management, a multi-billion dollar investment firm that focuses on credit-oriented strategies. Prior to joining Atalaya, Sachin worked with Prospect Capital Management, a multi-billion dollar credit and private equity fund, where he served on the investment committee, headed the illiquid public debt strategy, and structured private credit investments in esoteric assets.
He also worked in the investment banking practices of Citigroup and Merrill Lynch, where he structured and executed mergers, acquisitions, debt and equity transactions for a variety of private equity and corporate clients. He began his career at a technology start-up that provided advanced analytics to the consumer credit risk industry and was awarded a U.S. patent related to data mining. Sachin earned his bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Mumbai and his MBA with honors from Columbia University Business School. He also earned his Masters in Chemical Engineering from the University of Tennessee Knoxville, based on his research on Chaos Theory at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Lowell Thomas
Investment Director | CVC Credit Partners

Lowell is a senior credit analyst at CVC Credit Partners, the credit arm of CVC Capital. Before joining CVC, Lowell worked at Credit Suisse, where he was a sector strategist on the US High Yield trading desk. Lowell received his BA in economics from Harvard University and holds an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Sean Hayes
Managing Director & Head of US Syndicate | BMO

Sean heads BMO Capital Markets’ US Syndicate efforts across the Supranational/Sovereign/Agency (SSA), Investment Grade (IG), and Asset-Backed Securities (ABS) sectors. Since joining BMO in 2014, Sean has been instrumental in the growth of the US Dollar fixed income platform. BMO was named the “Coming Force in SSA Banking” as voted on by issuers at the annual GlobalCapital Bond Awards for three straight years, after a substantial move in SSA USD league tables into the top 10. The high-grade credit platform has continued its momentum, cracking the top 15 in ABS USD league tables, as well as growing market share in IG corporate underwriting. Sean has been involved in ESG debt underwritings for SSA and IG issuers across USD and CAD currencies.
Prior to joining BMO Capital Markets, Sean’s past experience includes HSBC’s Public Sector Debt Capital Markets team, as well as various roles at the Royal Bank of Scotland within Investment Grade Syndicate and SSA Origination.  Sean earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Georgetown University, as a double major in Finance and Marketing. He holds Series 7, 24, 63, and 79 licenses.

Shaun Wong
Private Investor

Shaun is currently a Private Investor.  Most recently, Shaun was the Head of Special Situations managing an opportunistic credit and equities portfolio at Global Credit Advisers (GCA), a credit-focused alternative investment manager founded in 2008.  Before starting the Distressed platform at GCA in 2016, Shaun was a Director in the Leveraged Finance Trading group at Credit Suisse.  Prior to Credit Suisse, Shaun was the CIO of a start-up macro hedge fund and was a Fixed Income trader at Goldman Sachs.  Shaun holds an MBA from NYU Stern and a BA from Princeton University.