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Goldman Sachs dials back wealth management plans

Goldman Sachs dials back wealth management plans

Goldman Sachs will dial back its wealth management plans for the year, a senior executive said Wednesday.

It will slow the hiring of private wealth advisors, and delay the launch of a digital wealth management platform to 2021, chief operating officer John Waldron said.

‘While we continue to pursue growth in our overall wealth franchise, we are acting prudently in the current environment,’ Waldron shared at a strategic decisions conference by Bernstein.

Waldron did not reveal how much hiring will slow by. In January, the bank had detailed plans to hire 250 private wealth advisors globally over three years, representing a 30% increase.

The Americas was slated for a 20% growth in advisors. Meanwhile, the Asia Pacific and Europe, the Middle East and Africa regions were set for a 50% jump. 

Goldman is also expanding its wealth management offerings to include mass affluent and high-net-worth individuals. 

The bank acquired United Capital for $750m last year, and subsequently rebranded it as Goldman Sachs Personal Financial Management.

The division has worked with Goldman’s financial advisory platform Ayco to come up with solutions targeting ‘the C-Suite all the way through to a broader base of employees’, Waldron said. 

They have partnered on seven corporate mandates, and have several large projects in the pipeline, he added.

Around 300 client referrals have also been made between the division and Goldman’s wealth management business in the year-to-date. 

Although the new platform’s launch has been delayed, the bank is ‘committed to the medium-term targets that we laid out. 

‘We continue to see a significant growth opportunity in the high-net-worth segment of this market,’ Waldron said.

Goldman’s wealth management business had a net revenue of $1.21bn in the first quarter, that was 18% higher than a year ago. 

This was due to significantly higher management fees and other fees, partly due to the acquisition of United Capital.