Women in business

Goldman's baby step in the right direction on board diversity

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Goldman Sachs announced Thursday that it won't help take European and North American companies public unless they have at least one "diverse" board director, effective July 1.

The big picture: In general, this is a positive development. Board diversity has been shown to improve company performance, per numerous academic studies, and far too many issuers continue to rely on bogus "pipeline" or meritocracy excuses for their boardroom homogeny.

Goldman Sachs CEO says bank won't take companies public without one female or minority board candidate

David Solomon.
Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon. Photo: Michael Kovac/Getty Images

Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon told CNBC Thursday the investment bank won't help companies go public unless they have at least one diverse board candidate, “with a focus on women,” starting in July.

Why it matters: Government and shareholders are pressing public companies to put more women on boards. Goldman’s announcement will push some private companies to think about diversifying their boards before going public.