Certified Financial Modelling & Private Equity Analyst™

Demonstrate your mastery of Private Equity financial modelling to top employers.


Twice a year


6 months part-time


Live online instructor-led sessions, 45 hours

Certificate fee:


Instalment payment plan available

Pay in 6 x monthly instalments using your credit or debit card with Paythen.


2 hours per week live classes (plus additional study time)

Class size:

Average 20 students for personalised 1‑to‑1 attention

The Certified Financial Modelling & Private Equity Analyst™ certification program teaches you in-depth financial modelling with a focus on Private Equity and Investment Banking.

Financial modelling is a critical skill to have in Private Equity as it forms the basis on which decisions are taken. These financial models are applied to multiple levels of an investment: from forecasting the impact of a decision on a business’s cash flow, to forecasting the underlying Fund or even the embedded remuneration received by Private Equity managers (carried interest).

You will undergo rigorous training that will equip you with the key skills to perform the following:

  • Model businesses for decision-making & valuation, using discounted cash flow (DCF)
  • Build Leveraged Buy-out models with complex debt waterfalls (LBO modelling)
  • Implement corporate structuring and tax simulations
  • Build fund models & calculate carried interest

This instructor-led certification program consists of four courses comprising 26 modules including an assessed Capstone project.

Download the course brochure and detailed schedule.

Advance your career in Private Equity

LFA provides the training and the skills that will deliver the most commercial impact for employers. Our instructors are at the top of their fields and are practicing professionals so you will always have access to their market knowledge, professional experience and the key developments currently happening in the Private Equity industry.

The annual cash* compensation can reach on average up to the following:


Analyst (1–3 years)


Associate (4–7 years)


Vice-president (8–12 years)

Source: mergersandacquisitions.com (2021)
* Base salary and annual cash bonus. Excludes annual carried interest allocations

Who should enroll in this programme?


Access to Microsoft Excel in English and a broadband Internet connection. Prior knowledge or experience in Finance is beneficial but not necessary. Using a PC over a Mac is preferable.

Program topics

Course 1: Excel for Finance

Module 1: Foundations of Microsoft Excel

You will familiarise yourself with the layout, navigation, and basic building blocks of Excel. Learn the main formulas, keyboard shortcuts, formatting, and formula extension techniques.

Module 2: Conditional and Mathematical formulas

Master the use of Excel formulas that depend on conditions & variables: IF statements, SUMIFS, SUMPRODUCT, logical functions, AND, OR, TRUE, FALSE, COUNTIFS etc. Learn to apply the correct formula to the right situation. Work through real-life Finance applications.

Module 3: Sort, filter and clean large data sets, text functions, text manipulation and extraction

Learn how to modify and extract meaningful information that is usually coming out as text format from financial databases like Oracle/SAP. Learning how to clean large data sets is a key skill that is expected from analysts in Investment Banking & Private Equity industries.

Module 4: Apply financial formulas, dates functions, format like a pro!

Master formatting in Excel and apply a set of design rules. Learn and apply the main financial formulas such as XIRR, XNPV or EOMONTH.

Module 5: Lookup functions – focus on Index-Match, data tables, goal seek and formula auditing

Master the use of Lookup functions such as INDEX/MATCH, VLOOKUP, HLOOKUP – essential formulas behind exploiting data sets in Financial Models. ‘Goal seek’ your way to a solution and learn how to create a data table. Understand how to audit calculations using Formula Auditing.

Module 6: Customise your Excel and create DCF models quickly

Customise Excel to suit your needs – become faster with customised shortcuts etc. Learn to make a Discounted Cash Flow (‘DCF’) analysis swiftly. Apply lookup and search functions to create ‘Trial Balances’ and Financial Statements quickly.

Course 2: Financial Modelling & Valuation

Module 7: Financial Modelling 101: source and analyse company financials

Understand why financial modelling is so important in finance and business. Discover the use cases of financial models. Learn the Do’s & Don’ts of Financial Modelling. Source the required financial and qualitative information on companies & analyse the data before starting to model.

Module 8: Input Financial data, create analytical Investment Banking standard financial statements and derive financial ratios. Create the ‘Underwriting Dashboard’

Condense real world financial data from annual reports into Investment Banking standard financial statements (Income statement, Balance sheet and Cash Flow statement). Derive the key financial ratios needed for Financial Modelling. Build your ‘dashboard’ – the main worksheet that will drive your model.

Module 9: Forecast your three main Financial Statements (Income statement, Balance sheet and Cash Flow statement)

Learn how to create forecasted Financial Statements from scratch.

Module 10: Create your Expense forecasting Model (opex, working capital & Property, Plant & Equipment)

Understand and model opex, working capital and Property, Plant & Equipment.

Module 11: Basic corporate debt & Capital Policy modelling

Understand the main financial debt instruments used by companies and learn how to forecast debt in a model. Analysing historical capital (leverage & dividend) policy of a company and forecast both dividends and leverage.

Module 12: Basic Corporate Tax & Discounted Cash Flow modelling

Model company taxation accurately. Build the Discounted Cash Flow (‘DCF’) valuation worksheet. Understand the key drivers behind a DCF and best practices behind choosing the most reasonable assumptions.

Module 13: Revenue and Cost of Goods Sold (‘COGS’) modelling

Identify the mathematical drivers behind revenue and COGS of your target company and model these correctly. Understand how revenue and COGS in different industries would be modelled.

Module 14: Put it all together: A real Investment Banking Underwriting session

Learn to build a reasonable valuation case. Analyse and assess the result with your cohort and build defensible arguments against outside scrutiny. Experience a real Investment Banking underwriting session.

Module 15: Scenario analysis and sensitivities

Learn how build seamless scenarios and sensitivity analyses (data tables) into your Model.

Course 3: Private Equity & LBO Modelling

Module 16: Discover the Private Equity industry: understand the job market, main players, and recent developments

Understand and explore the Private Equity industry space and learn about the different segments within it. Gain awareness of recent developments and trends. Discover the variety of job roles within the Private Equity industry.

Module 17: Understand Private Equity return drivers & the role of leveraged debt corporate structuring

Learn what drives the returns of a Private Equity investment. Understand the main Corporate Structuring strategies and modelling implications. Discover leveraged finance instruments and techniques.

Module 18: Master debt structure and capital stack modelling

Master the modelling of complicated debt structures (or capital stacks) with preferred waterfalls. Understand the complex debt instruments such as PIK/Mezz etc. Learn to build bankruptcy remote models.

Module 19: Real life corporate taxation

Understand how corporate taxation really works and implement corporate structures into Financial Models. Learn to build a real taxation model that can be applied to any company.

Module 20: Build the Leveraged Buyout model

Learn to build an advanced Leveraged Buyout model that incorporates complex debt structures and real life taxation into it.

Module 21: Fund level modelling

Learn to put multiple deals together into a fund model. Understand the life phases of a Private Equity fund and learn how to model management fees and fund level expenses.

Module 22: Carried interest & promote waterfall

Understand the main types of carried interest and asset manager promote in Private Equity. Learn to model these into your forecast.

Course 4: Capstone project

Module 23: Capstone project

Introduction to the Capstone project and requirements. Q&A session on assignment and deliverable.

Module 24 and 25: Individual Capstone project mentoring sessions
Module 26: Final module and Programme feedback session

All submitted assignments will receive detailed feedback from the instructor after submission.

2nd September 2024 – 24th February 2025

Length: 6 months (excluding holidays)

Days: Monday

Time: 8pm – 10pm (CET),

7pm – 9pm (UK)

Holiday breaks: 23.12.2024, 30.12.2024

Students: Max. 20

Mode: Live online

Cost: 2,999

2nd September 2024 – 24th February 2025

Length: 6 months (excluding holidays)

Days: Monday

Time: 8pm – 10pm (CET),

7pm – 9pm (UK)

Students: Max. 20

Mode: Live online

Cost: 2,999

Holiday breaks: 23.12.2024, 30.12.2024

Your training expert

Nikhil Gupta

CFO, Kadens Capital, Private Equity (current)
Managing Director, Peakside Capital Advisors, Private Equity (past)
M&A Investment Banker, Rothschild & Co., Investment Bank (past)

Nikhil Gupta is a seasoned Private Equity and Investment Banking Senior Executive. He is currently the CFO of Kadens Capital, a Private Equity firm. Prior to this, Nikhil was a Managing Director at Peakside Capital Advisors, where he completed more than $3 billion in real estate transactions.

For the past several years, Nikhil has shared his knowledge and expertise gained over the last 15 years in Private Equity and Investment Banking, through coaching and teaching students.

Nikhil is an External Lecturer at ESSEC Business School, France where he teaches Private Equity financial modelling to Master’s in management and Master’s in finance students. He also teaches the MBA students at IMD Lausanne, Switzerland and at the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.


Upon successful completion of the course and the Capstone project, Leap Finance Academy grants a verified digital certificate to its participants. You will also receive a digital badge that can be posted on social media sites like LinkedIn.

Your digital certificate and badge will be tied to your identity information. We may request for official identification information before issuing your certification. All images are for illustrative purposes only and may be subject to change at the discretion of Leap Finance Academy.

Download the course brochure and detailed schedule.

Thank you

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