Evercore Adds Ex-Goldman Banker John Weinberg as Chairman

  • His family helped run Goldman Sachs for most of its existence
  • Evercore has boosted merger advisory fees after hiring spree

John S. Weinberg, the former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. dealmaker whose family helped run the firm for most of its existence, has joined Evercore Partners Inc. as chairman of the board.

Weinberg also will be executive chairman, the New York-based investment bank said in a statement Wednesday. Roger Altman, 70, who founded the advisory firm, will become senior chairman, according to the statement. Altman and Chief Executive Officer Ralph Schlosstein will remain on the board.

Weinberg, 59, spent 32 years at Goldman Sachs and was a vice chairman when he left last year. He served as co-head of investment banking for 12 years and maintained relationships with companies including Ford Motor Co., General Electric Co. and Boeing Co. He took a lead in repairing connections with clients after the firm faced criticism in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. This year, Weinberg joined the board of Ford.

“This is a profound step forward for Evercore,” Altman said in the statement. “There is no adviser more respected by clients around the world than John Weinberg.”

Evercore posted record fees from advising on mergers and acquisitions in the first nine months of 2016 after hiring more senior bankers than at any point in its 21-year history, including Goldman Sachs’s William Anderson last year to help clients handle activist investors. The firm is ranked 10th among advisers on mergers this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Global Ambitions

Evercore worked on CenturyLink Inc.’s agreement this year to buy Level 3 Communications Inc. for more than $30 billion. Altman has been advising DuPont Co. on its effort to combine with Dow Chemical Co., in a deal valued at about $60 billion.

Schlosstein has been expanding abroad by adding bankers and pursuing takeovers. He agreed to buy a business in Germany last year and bought U.K.-based Lexicon Partners in 2011. Evercore’s biggest acquisition was in 2014 when it bought International Strategy & Investment Group, adding research capabilities and helping to generate more business underwriting stock offerings. Evercore also has been building its wealth-management division.

“Our goal is really simple: We want to be the most elite global independent investment-banking advisory firm in the world,” Schlosstein said last month in an earnings call. “True eliteness requires scale, it requires globality.”

Weinberg’s grandfather Sidney ran Goldman Sachs from the Great Depression until 1969, and his father, John L. Weinberg, served as a senior partner and chairman from 1976 to 1990. His uncle, Sidney J. Weinberg Jr., who went by Jim, was a partner who was affiliated with Goldman Sachs for 45 years, and his cousin Peter was a banker at the firm until leaving in 2005 to start his own advisory boutique.

Weinberg isn’t the only Goldman Sachs veteran to depart and join a smaller rival recently. Chris Cole, the former co-chairman of investment banking, started his own firm, Ardea Partners. Gordon Dyal also began his own venture.

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