Goldman Sachs is losing one of its top dealmakers.
Gregg Lemkau, a nearly-three decade veteran of the bank and co-head of its powerhouse investment banking division, is leaving Goldman at the end of the year, according to an internal memo sent Monday from CEO David Solomon. Lemkau is joining MSD Partners, an investment firm linked to Michael Dell’s family office, in February as CEO, according to a separate release.
Lemkau, known as one of the top mergers bankers on Wall Street, has advised on hundreds of transactions since joining the bank in 1992. He first discussed this move with Solomon around mid-year, and Solomon attempted to convince Lemkau to stay, according to people with knowledge of the discussions. Goldman Sachs is the world’s top-ranked mergers firm with roles on $ 758.6 billion in deals so far this year, according to Dealogic.
Another Goldman veteran, Jim Esposito, is taking Lemkau’s place as co-head of the investment banking division, Solomon said in a separate memo. While Esposito was most recently global co-head of the bank’s trading division, he has spent most of his 25-year career at Goldman in senior investment banking roles.
“Please join me in thanking Gregg for his many contributions to the firm, our clients and our people, and in wishing him and his family the very best in the years ahead,” Solomon said in the memo. The Wall Street Journal was first to report on his departure.
MSD Partners manages money for both the Dell family office and outside investors and has more than $ 15 billion in assets under management. Lemkau will focus on growing the firm’s existing investments in real estate, private and public equities and credit, as well as expanding into new areas, the company said. He’ll work with John Phelan, the co-founder of MSD and its chief investment officer.
“I’ve known Gregg for a number of years and think that he will be a great fit for the culture that has been built at MSD over two decades,” Michael Dell said in the release.
Here’s the full memo from Solomon:
Gregg Lemkau to Retire From Goldman Sachs
Gregg Lemkau, co-head of the Investment Banking Division (IBD) and a member of the Management Committee, will retire from the firm at the end of the year.
As co-head of IBD, Gregg has helped lead our efforts to continue to solidify and grow our pre-eminent investment banking franchise around the world. During his more than 28-year tenure at the firm, he has advised on hundreds of transactions, and has spent significant time advising our clients across all sectors globally while working in our offices in the US and in Europe. The firm has benefitted greatly from Gregg’s deep and expansive understanding of industries and markets, as well as his distinctive client service mindset.
Gregg has also been instrumental in supporting our commitment to driving sustainable inclusive economic growth, helping conceive of and implement our board diversity initiative. He has partnered closely with our clients to improve their diversity representation pre-IPO, and through this critical work has underscored our firm’s conviction in the importance of having diverse voices represented at the table, both in business and society more broadly.
In addition, Gregg has been a steward of the firm’s culture of teamwork and excellence throughout his nearly three decades at Goldman Sachs, and has been a key developer of talent and a mentor to so many of our current and future leaders. He has also sponsored a number of important programs to support our people, such as events organized by the Goldman Sachs Veterans Network and our Veterans Integration Program.
Gregg has served with excellence since he joined us as an analyst in 1992 in Mergers & Acquisitions. Prior to assuming his current role as co-head of IBD, Gregg was co-head of Global Mergers & Acquisitions. He has also served as global co-head of the Technology, Media and Telecom Group, global co-head of the Healthcare Group and chief operating officer for the Investment Banking Division. Gregg is a member of the IBD Executive Committee, and previously served as chairman of the Firmwide Commitments Committee from 2011 to 2015 and as a member of the Partnership Committee. He was named managing director in 2001 and partner in 2002.
Please join me in thanking Gregg for his many contributions to the firm, our clients and our people, and in wishing him and his family the very best in the years ahead.
David M. Solomon
This article has been updated to make it clear that Lemkau is joining an investment firm affiliated with the Dell family office.
With reporting from CNBC’s Wilfred Frost