A Peek into Goldman’s Exclusive Asia Private Bank

It’s not just anyone who can be a client of Goldman Sachs Private Wealth Management. To get in the door, you need US$100 million in investable assets – that is, US$100 million not tied up in your business or property. And you need to bank at least US$10 million of that with Goldman.

That may be higher than the barriers raised by many of Goldman competitors, but the U.S.-based investment bank isn’t exactly having a tough time finding clients. The typical Goldman Private Wealth customer in Asia has about US$150 million in investable assets, and puts an average of about US$50 million of it with Goldman.

Ron Lee, the energetic head of Goldman’s Private Wealth group for the last three years, and a veteran of Goldman in Asia since he joined its sales and trading operations in 1998, borrows a colleague’s phrase in referring to these clients as “insti-viduals.” Get it? Part institution, part individual.