This time last week, Bloomberg reported that Goldman Sachs is letting go of, "dozens of managing directors, executive directors and vice presidents across the mergers and debt and equity capital markets teams." One week on, we understand that no more than 20 people are going across EMEA and recruiters in London say Goldman's IBD layoffs seem pretty gentle in nature.
"We've had several senior VPs at Goldman in London coming forward and inquiring what jobs are available," says the head of one recruitment firm in London. "They never say they've been let go, but the fact that they're 'just looking' always raises eyebrows."
Goldman isn't commenting on the layoffs, but London recruiters said they include Sergei Stankovski, managing director and head of Goldman's Russian investment banking business. Stankovski was hired from Barclays in 2007 to build Goldman's business in Russia. In light of sanctions, however, M&A deals in Russia fell to €18.7bn last year, down from €99bn in 2012. Banks like Deutsche Bank have been cutting in Russia as a result.
Another M&A recruiter in London says he has yet to be approached by anyone coming out of Goldman. Given his stature in the London M&A market, this is unusual, but given Goldman's layoff technique, he says this is pretty standard. "Goldman Sachs seem better than most other banks at making layoffs in IBD. They generally give people four or five months to find something else and eveyrone turns up to work in the meantime. They're pretty accomodating and gentle about it. It's all very subtly done."