His rise to heir apparent prompts a host of questions for Goldman, including the big ones: when exactly will Blankfein make his handoff, and what will Solomon do then?
Solomon will become sole president and chief operating officer of Goldman Sachs as of April 20, the company said Monday.
The bank announced that Harvey Schwartz, the firm's president and co-chief operating officer, has made a decision to retire effective April 20.
Blankfein, 63, has served as the bank's CEO for about 12 years.
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"It was becoming a little too much like Washington, D.C., rather than Wall Street in how this contest was playing out, with one contender a black belt in karate and the other a D.J.in the Caribbean", said Mike Mayo, an analyst at Wells Fargo who has a buy rating on Goldman's shares, referring to Solomon's hobby of spinning music under the name D.J.
"Harvey's work ethic, command of complexity, and client focus have defined his career at the firm", Blankfein said in the statement.
Picking Solomon is consistent with Goldman's growth plan outlined last fall in which it emphasized greater investment banking presence in the middle market, as well as stepped-up operations in asset management and newer ventures in online banking, said Wang. He co-led the powerful investment banking division for a decade before he was promoted at the end of 2016.
Solomon, 56, a former investment banker, has been boosted by the strength in that business, where Goldman Sachs posted record revenue in 2017. The 55-year-old spends his free time as a DJ at nightclubs and doing yoga with his adult daughter, according to a profile in The New York Times.
Solomon joined Goldman in 1999 as an outside partner, focusing on building out the company's high-yield debt business.