Goldman Sachs has been trimming its investment banking employees in Asia over the past few weeks in the face of growing competition from Chinese rivals. And the job market is tough for out-of-work bankers in Hong Kong and Singapore.
But recruiters say ex-Goldmanites remain in demand, albeit mainly in tech and buy-side firms. And over the past 12 months plenty of people have successfully moved from Goldman into good jobs elsewhere.
Here’s a selection of some of the more interesting moves, based on online public profiles.
1. Mengjie Wang
Ant Financial, the online payment platform owned by Chinese tech giant Alibaba, has been taking on talent from the banking sector in China over the past 12 months. Wang, who has a Master in Finance from Princeton, is proof that it can do the same in Hong Kong – and poach from Goldman Sachs. She joined Ant in July as a senior associate after a five-year career at Goldman in Hong Kong and China, latterly as an associate in its financial institutions group, according to her public profile.
2. Terence Lim
Lim spent nearly nine years at Goldman Sachs in Singapore, rising to become a VP covering the financial services and technology sectors within its investment banking division. In June he joined one of the main buy-side recruiters of IB talent in the city state: Temasek. Lim got a promotion to associate director in the process and he now works in structuring and execution.
3. Stacie Wang
Wang was an executive director, North Asia institutional sales, at Goldman in Hong Kong until May this year, according to her online profile. Three months later she resurfaced at PIMCO as head of China, global wealth management. The investment firm is expanding in Singapore and Hong Kong and announced in September that it plans hire more than 20 new staff across the two cities. Wang is tasked with strengthening its relationships with China intermediaries.
4. Jessica Choi
Choi spent the first five years of her career (2010 to 2015) in institutional equities sales at Goldman Sachs in Singapore, according to her profile. Unusually, she got into Goldman having not interned in the banking sector (her internships were at Deloitte, Ericsson and Microsoft). Earlier this year Choi left banking to become Singapore territory manager of Uber for Business, a work-travel division of the taxi-app company.
5. Alvin Sheng Hui Tan
Uber isn’t the only US tech firm snapping up ex-Goldmanites in Asia. Like Choi, Tan worked for Goldman from 2010 to 2015 – he was based in both Hong Kong and Singapore, and he rose to executive director rank. Before that he was a ‘Robert and Renee Belfer International and Global Affairs Fellow’ at Harvard University. Now he’s head of public policy for Southeast Asia at…Facebook.
6. Amy Geng
Geng’s career progression has been textbook. She worked as a Hong Kong-based analyst in prime brokerage for UBS for three years until 2011, then did an MBA at Columbia Business School and a summer-associate stint at Goldman. In 2013 this led to a full-time associate job within the US bank’s consumer and retail coverage group, in New York and then Beijing. With two years of Goldman experience under her belt Geng was able to move into private equity – she’s now an investment executive at XIO Group in Hong Kong.
7. Shun Wei Ong
Ong spent the first three years of his banking career at CIMB in Singapore but then managed to break into Goldman in 2012. He stayed there more than three years, most recently as an executive director in global fixed income management. He’s now in the same division at Credit Suisse in Singapore – as a portfolio manager in Asian credit.
8. May Chen
Chen’s career is proof that buy-side firms in Asia are still willing to take on young talent from the banks. The University of Chicago graduate joined Goldman in Hong Kong in 2012 and worked on IPOs, bond issuances and other deals across the TMT, healthcare and natural resources sectors, according to her profile. She broke into the buy-side just three years later and is now at PE firm Ally Bridge Group, still specialising in TMT and healthcare.
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