Axios Pro Exclusive Content

Goldman Sachs pulls back from consumer banking

Oct 17, 2022
Illustration a diverse array of raised hands behind the Wall Street bull statue

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Goldman Sachs is reorganizing as it pulls back from its ambitions to be a main street, consumer-facing bank via Marcus, its savings and lending service, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Why it matters: Marcus was built in no small part thanks to acquisitions. Goldman's new strategy of focusing on affluent consumers rather than the mass market suggests it will be a less active acquirer in the consumer space — at least for now.

Background: Known for its investment banking chops, Goldman Sachs made its first real leap into the consumer finance space via its acquisition of GE Capital Bank's online deposit platform in early 2016.

  • It later acquired Clarity Money — a personal finance tool —for about $100 million. Around the same time, it bought Final and Bond Street.
  • In 2020, Goldman bulked up its loan book by buying GM's credit card portfolio for about $2.5 billion.
  • In 2021, Goldman acquired BNPL provider GreenSky for $2.2 billion.

Details: According to the WSJ, Goldman plans to reorganize its largest businesses into three divisions. As part of that shake up, Goldman will place Marcus in the same division as its asset and wealth management unit.

  • A separate division will house Greensky and its credit card ventures.
  • Goldman Sachs declined to comment to Axios.

Of note: Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon signaled over the summer that the bank is taking a breather on such acquisitions to focus on integrating and building its existing projects.

  • "Certainly, as we get out to 2023 and 2024, we'll be more open to other partnerships and other meaningful things going forward," Solomon said during the company's second quarter earnings call.
Go deeper