Responsible finance: Goldman pushes change
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Responsible finance: Goldman pushes change

The investment bank will no longer IPO firms without diverse directors.


Goldman Sachs continues to lead on environmental, social and governance issues. 

In December it announced it will be investing $750 billion in the next decade to fight climate change. Then, at Davos, chief executive David Solomon declared that from July onwards the firm will not take public any US or European company that does not have at least one “diverse” director at the time of IPO.

As Goldman points out, over the last two years more than 60 US and European companies went public without any female board members. Solomon also announced that by July 2021, the target would be increased to two diverse directors – more than 100 US and European companies that had an IPO in the last two years had only one female board member.

This diversity commitment is incredibly bold and Goldman deserves credit for leading in this regard. No other bank has come out with such a commitment. Also, unlike financial commitments that often end up forgotten or are opaque, this one has no vagueness at all. It will be easy to see if the firm is reneging.


There are reasons to pause in the praise, however.

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