Goldman’s Brower Said to Leave as Wendy Sacks Quits Firm

Goldman’s Cindy Brower, Wendy Sacks Said to Leave
Pedestrians walk past Goldman Sachs Group Inc. headquarters in New York. Photographer: Jin Lee/Bloomberg

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Managing Directors Cynthia A. “Cindy” Brower and Wendy E. Sacks, 19-year veterans who split a job in the credit-sales group, are leaving the firm, people with knowledge of their exits said.

Brower, 46, and Sacks, 40, who met in the New York-based bank’s training program when they joined on the same day in 1993, had been sharing a sales role for the past three years so they could each work part-time, said the people, who asked to remain anonymous because the departures haven’t been announced. The pair handled sales of loans and distressed debt.

Their decision to leave wasn’t connected to this week’s resignation by Greg Smith, a London-based employee in equity-derivative sales who cited the firm’s “toxic and destructive” environment in a New York Times op-ed explaining why he was quitting after 12 years, the people said. The firm, which said it disagreed with Smith’s assertions, sent a memo to current and former employees, saying most of its workers believe it provides exceptional service to customers.

“While Goldman typically faced little employee turnover, departures among partners and managing directors have increased substantially over the past year,” Charles Peabody, an analyst at Portales Partners LLC in New York who rates the stock “outperform,” wrote in a March 14 research note. “Top executives who have been instrumental in building many of GS’s successful businesses, and made great fortunes in the process, are stepping away in the face of a changing environment.”

Compensation Drops

The company lost about 50 partners, the highest level of employee, in the 12 months through January as revenue and compensation fell at Goldman Sachs and throughout the industry. The firm also eliminated 2,400 jobs last year.

Goldman Sachs, the fifth-biggest U.S. bank by assets, rose 2.2 percent to $123.06 in New York Stock Exchange composite trading yesterday, recouping most of the loss it suffered the day before following the publication of Smith’s opinion piece. The stock is up 36 percent this year, beating the 21 percent gain in the 81-company Standard & Poor’s 500 Financials Index.

Brower and Sacks worked in the fixed-income division throughout their careers at Goldman Sachs, and current and former colleagues said they were successful and highly regarded. Sacks decided to retire a few weeks ago for personal reasons, according to two of the people. Brower also decided to leave after the firm offered her different work schedules, three of the people said.

Columbia Recruiting

Brower spent her first 13 years in high-yield debt sales, was promoted to managing director at the end of 2003 and was the sales manager from 2004 to 2006 before taking her most recent role. She also led recruiting efforts for the fixed-income division at Columbia Business School and was involved in the firm’s women’s network.

She worked at Dillon Read & Co. and Kidder Peabody & Co. before joining Goldman Sachs and had a master’s degree in finance and marketing from Columbia. She didn’t reply to a message left on her mobile phone.

Sacks, who was promoted to managing director in 2006, started her Goldman Sachs career in interest-rate sales and joined bank-loan sales in 2001. She didn’t reply to an e-mail seeking comment.

Goldman Sachs’s bank-loan division suffered high-level departures last year, including Buckley T. Ratchford, the partner who was global head of bank-loan trading and distressed investing; and Blake W. Mather, a partner who ran bank-loan sales. The company had approximately $1 billion in unrealized losses related to relationship lending activities last year, according to an annual filing.

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