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Goldman Sachs names Australia's former treasurer to Asia-Pacific adviser role

·2 min read
FILE PHOTO: The logo for Goldman Sachs is seen on the trading floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City

By Scott Murdoch and Renju Jose

SYDNEY (Reuters) -Goldman Sachs Group Inc appointed Australia's former Treasurer Josh Frydenberg as the bank's senior regional adviser for the Asia Pacific region on Thursday.

Frydenberg became one of the highest-ranking cabinet ministers to ever be voted out of parliament this year when he was ousted by independent Monique Ryan, a pediatric neurologist running for office for the first time, during elections in May.

The appointment came after the investment bank approached Frydenberg following his election defeat, according to Simon Rothery, Goldman Sachs Australia chief executive.

"When it was looking likely that Josh would lose his seat, we had a senior leaders meeting and there was a broad consensus that he had a unique portfolio of skills that would make him a strong addition," Rothery told Reuters.

"For our corporate, institutional, family office clients the number one concern is the economy and Josh helped get Australia through the pandemic in the best shape in the world. Within business he is highly regarded and trusted and that has real appeal."

Frydenberg will work from the bank's office on a full-time basis, Rothery said, adding that he would not work with any government agency that he had oversight of as Treasurer.

Goldman Sachs was ranked second in terms of deal value for merger and acquisition advisory in Australia in the first half of 2022, having worked on $31.8 billion worth of deals, according to Refinitiv data.

It has worked on the most number of deals alongside long-time rival Macquarie Group.

In equity capital markets, it slipped from first to seventh in the first half of 2022, versus a year earlier, with league tables skewed by small advisers working on small transactions.

Frydenberg led Australia's economic response to COVID-19 in the previous Liberal-National coalition government, including setting up pandemic payments and relaxing some corporate regulations.

"I look forward to joining the team and contributing to the firm's leadership, its global capability, and its strength of client franchise," Frydenberg said in a statement.

Frydenberg was elected to the Australian Parliament in 2010 from Melbourne's Kooyong, and in August 2018 was appointed the treasurer. He was also a senior adviser to former Prime Minister John Howard and was previously a director of global banking at Deutsche Bank.

(Reporting by Renju Jose in Sydney, Scott Murdoch in Hong Kong and Jose Joseph in Bengaluru; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Kim Coghill)