Goldman Sachs shrugs at the end of CEO David Solomon’s DJ career

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Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon—who has long moonlighted as EDM DJ “D-Sol”—is officially leaving the booth. Solomon will officially no longer DJ at high-profile events, according to a Tuesday Financial Times report, citing people with knowledge of the matter. His bank also reported earnings on Tuesday, beating analysts’ estimates but still coming 33% shy of last year’s figures. His bank was quick to dismiss any connection between the two.

“This is not news,” Goldman representative Tony Fratto told Fortune (and many other outlets, verbatim). “David hasn’t publicly DJ’ed an event in well over a year, which we have confirmed multiple times in the past.” 

Solomon’s most recent star turn at the turntables was his banner appearance at the Lollapalooza music festival in Chicago in July 2022. The FT reported that Solomon had begun paring back his hobby since a 2019 gig in Belgium at Tomorrowland, a “a decadent European dance-music festival known for its undulating throngs of naked, sweaty, drug-fueled revelers.” 

“Music was not a distraction from David’s work,” Fratto added. “The media attention became a distraction.” 

To Fratto’s point, since becoming CEO in 2018, Solomon has weathered criticism for using his company jet to fly to DJ gigs, asking his Goldman media managers to assist with his music press, and even apologizing to Goldman’s board after he DJ’ed at a crowded Hamptons party during the summer of 2020, when social distancing measures were still in place. 

The real criticism, though, has to do with Goldman’s financial results under Solomon. The bank’s stock is down nearly 10% since January 2023, though it’s still up roughly 40% from the Lloyd Blankfein days. In the second quarter, the bank posted its lowest quarterly profit in three years—a 58% drop—and its third-quarter earnings, released Tuesday, showed a 33% year-over-year drop

Solomon insists he’s “never felt more optimistic” about the bank, as the market had priced in the drop and the actual earnings per share of $5.47 managed to beat analysts’ estimates. Solomon took a 30% pay cut earlier this year, following billions of dollars in lost investment in consumer banking product Marcus. He’s also overseen over 3,000 job cuts

Solomon himself has taken a series of ad hominem attacks and criticism on the chin for his leadership style, management practice and CEO performance. “It’s not fun watching some of the personal attacks in the press,” he said last month. “I don’t recognize the caricature that’s been painted of me.”

That caricature, at least for now, will no longer don over-ear headphones and sound booths. “The thing that everyone grapples with is the DJ, the McLaren sponsorship, all the flashy stuff—you can do that if you’re performing, but he hasn’t gotten book value up,” one Goldman worker told Insider last year. “The stock is near a low.”



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