Three mid-level bankers in Goldman Sachs’ technology investment banking group in San Francisco have left for ride service company Uber in recent times.
The three – Ian Kleinfield, Prabir Adarkar, and Chris Lapointe - are the latest to leave Wall Street banks for Silicon Valley startups, where the lure of more flexible hours can be hard to resist. For tech companies, having bankers on staff can help smooth out initial public offerings and other fund raisings.
Uber, valued at around $51 billion, said in August that it expected an IPO in 18-24 months. It has so far got $7.4 billion in fundraising, and is the biggest so-called “unicorn” — privately held tech startups worth $1 billion or more — that has yet to go public.
Goldman has lost enough employees in recent years that earlier this month it announced a series of changes to help retain junior employees. A vice-president in Wall Street investment banking can be paid $500,000, including bonus, while a mid-level corporate development employee at a technology company such as Uber might earn closer to $200,000, recruiters said. But the banker’s salary will often fluctuate depending deals and capital raising in a particular year.
New employees seem to be avoiding banks altogether. Harvard Business School said 20% of 2015 graduates said they were taking jobs at technology companies, up from 11% in 2011.
Kleinfield, Adarkar and Lapointe did not return emails and messages seeking comment.