Goldman’s CEO-in-waiting makes another change, names new co-head of trading division

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David Solomon, Goldman Sachs  Co.

David Solomon, Goldman Sachs’ incoming CEO, is wasting no time getting his house in order.

Solomon, who takes over for current CEO Lloyd Blankfein on Oct 1., will name Jim Esposito global co-head of the firm’s trading division as soon as Monday, according to a person with knowledge of the plans.

Esposito, a partner who was co-chief operating officer of the bank’s fixed income business, will join Ashok Varadhan as leaders of the trading organization, one of the largest on Wall Street. In June, Varadhan’s former co-heads Pablo Salame and Isabelle Ealet departed — leaving at least one opening at the top of the business, which is typically led by two or more executives.

The two trading co-heads will be charged with helping the firm — once Wall Street’s most profitable trading house — regain some of its former glory. While Goldman traders produced about $33 billion in revenue in 2009, the firm has struggled to adjust to the post-financial crisis environment, and it produced only about a third of that amount last year.

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In the meantime, rivals including J.P. Morgan have gained market share, helped by a more diverse set of clients than Goldman. In other cases, competitors have revamped business by cutting traders, such as Morgan Stanley’s move to cut one-fourth of its bond division in late 2015.

Esposito has previously served as chief strategy officer of the securities division, and co-head of global fixed income sales. He joined Goldman in 1995 as a salesman for emerging markets debt. Esposito’s promotion was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.

Since being formally named Blankfein’s successor last month, Solomon has added three women to the firm’s powerful management committee, and has proposed the company’s first potential Investor Day to give the Street clear financial objectives.

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