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Goldman seeks brand expansion

Private banking 2008: When the ultra-wealthy bump into the sub-prime

Goldman Sachs is truly the bank of ultra-high-net-worth clients. Its target clients have a liquid net worth of at least $10 million. Regarded by some as more of a service to complement the investment banking clients, the firm’s wealth management business is becoming more a focus.

Efforts to increase private banking offerings globally have been recognized by its competitors – in this year’s survey, Goldman Sachs ranked eighth-best global private bank, up from 12th last year. The firm also ranked second globally to UBS in hedge fund investments, and managed futures, and first in private equity investments, showing its dedication to alternative assets classes.

Global head of wealth management Peter Scaturro, who joined from US Trust in July, says the firm has taken several measures to expand its business over the past year. "In 2007 we created the banking financing and liquidity capabilities in the US, and are now rolling that out in Europe," says Scaturro.

In terms of regional expansion, Scaturro says next year Goldman will be focusing on China, Latin America (where the firm has just hired HSBC’s head of Latin American private banking, Betty Sanchez), India and the Middle East.

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