Financier David Milberg is a multi-talented man who excels at dealing with numbers. Yet lurking behind his professional success in finance is a history of a man smitten by the performing arts. Since his time as an undergraduate at Princeton, David Milberg has fervently supported original musical theater and has continued to do so with a slew of Broadway investor credits to his name.
David Milberg’s World of Finance
David Milberg started his banking and financial career after graduating from Princeton University in 1986. By the spring of 1987, David officially began his finance career with Bankers Trust Company, working as an analyst in the bank’s loan sales and syndications department.
|Note from the Margin: Bankers Trust Company was a historic American banking organization. The bank merged with Alex. Brown & Sons in 1997 before being acquired by Deutsche Bank in 1999. Deutsche Bank sold the Trust and Custody division of Bankers Trust to State Street Corporation in 2003. (wiki)|
Milberg helped Bankers Trust by marketing loans originated by the bank to finance large leveraged buyouts, including Ralphs Supermarkets, Northwest Airlines, and Kohl’s Department Stores. After promotion to an associate, he departed Bankers Trust Company and headed to business school.
When Academia Calls… Twice
David Milberg began his higher education at Princeton University, where he received his Bachelor of Arts in history. And although he had graduated from an ivy league school and had a great job in NYC, the financial capital of the world, David Milberg quickly decided that was not enough. So Milberg began pursuing a master’s degree in business administration at Columbia University. Milberg found that he could expand his professional opportunities within the finance industry by seeking and earning an MBA in 1991.
David Milberg worked very hard and achieved notable success throughout his time at Columbia. He stood out from his classmates by earning a spot on the Business School’s Dean’s List all four semesters he attended. Milberg’s status helped him obtain a coveted teaching assistant position in the corporate finance department of Columbia Business School.
|Note from the Margin: Columbia Business School is the school of business for Columbia University located at the main campus in Uptown, Manhattan, New York City. Established in 1916, Columbia Business School is one of six Ivy League business schools and is one of the oldest business schools in the world. The Columbia MBA Program (ranked #7 globally by Forbes and Bloomberg) is one of the most competitive globally, with an admission rate of 13.6% (2021). The student body is highly accomplished and diverse. Students in the class that entered in 2019 came from 61 countries and spoke more than 50 languages.|
During business school, David Milberg set out to pursue a career in investment banking in New York City, the world’s financial epicenter.
Banking With Lehman Brothers
David Milberg’s trajectory in the financial world kept a steady-paced movement up the ladder in the summer of 1990. That summer, David went to work as a summer associate at Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., a premier financial services firm in NYC. David’s exceptional performance earned him a permanent position with Lehman Brothers guaranteed to be waiting for him immediately upon graduating from Columbia in 1991. Working for Lehman Brothers, David Milberg climbed through the ranks in less than five years to become a Vice President, his position when he left Lehman Brothers in 1995.
|Note from the Margin: Lehman Brothers Holding Inc. was a global financial services firm founded in 1847. Before filing for bankruptcy in 2008, the investment banking behemoth was the fourth-largest in the US (behind Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and Merrill Lynch). Sporting 25,000 employees worldwide. Lehman Brothers offered investment banking, equity and fixed-income sales and trading (especially U.S. Treasury securities), research, investment management, private equity, and private banking. Lehman was 158 years old when it finally collapsed. On September 15, 2008, Lehman’s bankruptcy filing was the largest in US history, and many believe it played a huge role as an instigator of the financial crisis of 2008. In 1995, when David Milberg chose to exit the business for new pastures, Lehman Brothers was still gradually ascending to its most incredible heights, well before its demise.|
While at Lehman Brothers, Milberg worked on a great variety of transactions, including private placements, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings, rights offerings, and follow-on stock offerings. He initially focused on Natural Resources companies and later on Media and Communications firms.