47 year-old Goldman partner divulges secret to a successful global finance career

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Jim Esposito

Put yourself in the right place at the right time

If you aspire to become a successful banker with the sort of career that spans both decades and continents and entails becoming partner at Goldman Sachs, James Esposito is possibly your role model.

Head of the London financing group at Goldman Sachs, Esposito is an American. He joined Goldman in NYC in 1995 and transitioned smoothly to managing director in 2002 and partner in 2006. Even though the average tenure for Goldman partners is just eight years, Esposito has been a partner ever since. What's his secret? 'Positioning.'

In an interview with Financial News, Esposito says he moved to Europe in 2011 in preparation for the market's growth. European capital markets are in the grips of a process of 'disintermediation'

"Europe has embarked on a journey away from a credit-extension model dominated by commercial banks towards one in which the public capital markets play a much bigger role,” Esposito explains. Moreover, he says Goldman makes a point of moving its senior people to locations where they can get ahead of a growth curve and "have the biggest impact on our client franchise."

Put simply, therefore, an Esposito-style successful global banking career involves getting into a new market just before it takes off and riding it when it does. When you're starting out, familial support is probably beneficial too: Esposito's father was the former CFO of Chase Manhattan.

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