It's not just managing directors (MD) who get promoted at this time of year, banks are also busy elevating the next rung down: the vice presidents (VPs) and executive directors (EDs) who might make MD in future.
Goldman Sachs promoted its new class of VPs and EDs last Thursday. The two titles are roughly equivalent, but ED is the term more commonly used in Europe while VP is used elsewhere.
The new class comprises around 1,500 people in 45 offices worldwide. 48% are in the Americas, 28% are in Asia Pacific and just 24% are in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
The promotions come a month after Goldman Sachs announced its new MDs for 2019. Just 16% of Goldman's new MDs were in APAC, with another 31% in Europe and 53% in the U.S.. The reason for the regional discrepancy in promotions isn't clear, but it might be concluded that Goldman thinks Asia is the place to be in the medium term and is growing its mid-ranks there in preparation for this. Even so, only 12% of Goldman's revenues came from APAC in the first nine months of 2019.
If you want to become an ED or VP at Goldman Sachs the new class offers some pointers on how to go about it. 41% have advanced degrees, but only 9% have worked in multiple regions and just 12% have worked in more than one Goldman division. Once you get a job at Goldman Sachs, the implication is that you might best off sticking with it.
This year's promotions also suggest that it helps to start as Goldman Sachs as an analyst directly after leaving university and to work your way up. Goldman has developed a habit of hiring-in executive directors externally in recent years and 2019 has been no different. However, 57% of this year's class of ED and VP promotions started as analysts and have spent their entire careers at the firm. This compares to an even higher proportion (66%) who started as analysts in the new MD pool.
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