Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Gary Cohn refuses to reimburse Goldman Sachs salary, instead donates to charity

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Goldman Sachs and Gary Cohn broke their dead end on salary clawbacks linked to the 1MDB scandal, with the former bank chairman agreeing to donate millions of dollars to charity rather than returning them to the company as she requested.

In October, the bank pledged to recover or withhold up to $ 175 million in compensation from senior executives, to institutional failures which contributed to the 1MDB corruption scandal.

“We are happy that Gary has chosen to support charities that do important work and put this issue behind us,” the bank said in a statement. A person familiar with the situation said Mr Cohn’s donations were “in line with what the board asked for” – a sum that Bloomberg had reportedly estimated at around $ 10 million.

Goldman helped raise billions of dollars that were looted from the Malaysian state development fund 1MDB, and the bank’s affiliate in the country has pleaded guilty to corruption charges in the case.

Goldman agreed to record $ 2.9 billion global regulatory regulation in October, ending years of scandal-related investigations.

Goldman’s board of directors said that while none of its senior executives were “involved in or aware of” illicit activity related to 1MDB, the recoveries were “appropriate in light of the findings of government and regulatory investigations and the size of the total settlement of 1MDB ”.

Mr. Cohn objected to the reimbursement of his pay. He left the bank in 2016 to serve in the Trump administration, at which point his deferred compensation was deferred and converted to cash.

He plans to donate money to Covid-19 relief and social justice causes instead, according to people familiar with the arrangement.

His spokesperson said: “Mr. Cohn is a team player and, as a good corporate citizen, he volunteered several weeks ago to make a significant charitable contribution to the organizations sponsored by Goldman Sachs and looks forward to doing so.

Several other current and former Goldman executives have agreed to return compensation, according to a person familiar with the situation, including: current chief executive David Solomon; his predecessor, Lloyd Blankfein; former director of Europe, Middle East and Africa, Michael Sherwood; and former vice president Mike Evans. Board member David Viniar had also cooperated with the bank’s demands.

Several current executives are also facing recoveries, including COO John Waldron, CFO Stephen Scherr and Goldman Sachs International Director Richard Gnodde.

Goldman withholds $ 24 million and seeks an additional $ 51 million from former partner Tim Leissner, who pleaded guilty to US charges in the 1MDB case; former banker Roger Ng, who fights US criminal charges; and former partner Andrea Vella, who has not been the subject of criminal charges but has been barred from working in the US securities industry.


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