After taking over as CEO of the bank, Solomon’s mission was to develop new income streams and “drive more durable revenue,” in the process making it easier for outside investors to understand a still enigmatic bank that had been structured as a private partnership until its initial public offering in 1999. Yet despite Solomon ploughing billions of dollars into businesses such as consumer banking, asset management and transaction services, little has changed in Goldman’s revenue mix since the days of his predecessor, Lloyd Blankfein. Trading and investment banking still make up the lion’s share.
“True transformation will be hard organically,” says Christian Bolu, banking analyst at Autonomous Research. “And we know that from looking at Morgan Stanley, you don’t have to go that far.”