Just in time for Thanksgiving, the financial experts at Goldman Sachs -- who earned a Wall Street record profit of $9.34 billion in 2006-- are setting up a charity fund which they expect to grow to more than $1 billion within the next few years.
The New York-based investing titan, which has seemingly managed to escape unscathed from the brunt of the current mortgage crisis , said Wednesday it is calling its fund 'Goldman Sachs Gives.' It will be managed and paid for by the company itself. Through the fund, the firm's participating partners have agreed to commit a part of their overall compensation to charities.
Goldman Sachs has been fortunate to produce strong financial results in recent years and we want to support non-profit and other charitable organizations in a meaningful way, said Goldman Sachs Chairman and Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein in a statement.
Last December, Goldman announced that 2006 profit soared 93 percent compared to the previous year. The company set apart $16.5 billion for salaries bonuses and benefits, for an average of $622,000 per employee, although top earners at the company make much more. Blankfein earned $54.3 million in cash, stock and options, A Wall Street CEO record.
Over time, more members of the Goldman corporate family are expected to join in giving, including alumni, the firm said.
As a way possibly soothing the nerves of existing recipients of Goldman largess, the company said that the firm will be making a separate contribution to the fund that will not take the place of existing charitable giving, and isn't intended to be a substitute for other giving by its partners.
Goldman also announced that starting next year, it would boost its annual Matching Gift Program from $10,000 to $20,000 for charitable giving, subject to Board approval.