Goldman Sachs Sells Personal Financial Management Unit to Creative Planning

The sale marks a strategy shift away from the wealthy and toward the ultra-wealthy.


Illustration by RIA Intel

Goldman Sachs on Monday announced the sale of its Personal Financial Management unit to Creative Planning, one of the largest RIAs in the country. The deal is a bid by the investment banking giant to shift focus back to its core client base: the ultra-wealthy.

“This transaction . . . allows us to focus on the execution of our premier ultra-high net worth wealth management and workplace growth strategy and to serve HNW investors through RIA and other wealth management clients, such as Creative Planning. We will continue to support PFM and other Creative advisors with access to our investment solutions through our expanded strategic agreement,” said Marc Nachmann, global head of asset and wealth management at Goldman Sachs, in a statement.

The terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but the company said that the sale will “result in a gain” and is “margin accretive” to the asset and wealth management business. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2023.

The sale marks the end of Goldman’s ambitions in retail-focused wealth management.

Goldman first entered the sphere in 2019 when it spent $750 million to acquire RIA United Capital, which at the time managed about $25 billion in assets. United was then renamed Goldman Sachs Personal Financial Management in 2020.

Today, PFM manages about $29 billion and primarily serves a market that Goldman is actively moving away from: clients with a few million in assets.

In comparison, Goldman’s private wealth arm, which PFM is a small portion of, manages about $1 trillion in assets for more than 16,000 ultra-high net worth clients, who have $60 million or more in investable assets.

At Investor Day in February this year, Goldman Sachs said it plans to continue growing its proprietary wealth channels including Private Wealth Management, workplace financial planner Ayco, the related private banking and lending business, and Marcus Savings.

Goldman said that although it is selling its personal financial management unit, it will continue to serve wealth managers, like Creative, through customized solutions and public and private alternative products for high-net-worth investors through its third-party wealth business.

Creative Planning is one of the largest RIAs in the country with more than 2,100 employees across its affiliates and $245 billion in combined assets under advisement and assets under management.

In July, Creative entered into a strategic custody relationship with Goldman Sachs Advisor Solutions.

“Building on our existing custody relationship with Goldman Sachs Advisor Solutions, an expanded partnership with Goldman Sachs is a natural, strategic fit,” Peter Mallouk, president and chief executive officer of Creative Planning said in a statement. “We welcome the talented advisors from PFM as we remain committed to being the leading advisor in the independent space. Together, we will offer HNW investors comprehensive planning and a broad set of solutions related to wealth and investment management.”

Related Articles