Goldman Sachs and its investment banking partner in China may part ways, potentially raising questions about future control of the Wall Street firm's business there, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.
Fang Fenglei, chairman of a joint venture called Goldman Sachs Gao Hua Securities, has said he plans to start a private-equity fund that could raise as much as $2 billion, the Wall Street Journal said, citing "people familiar with the situation."
Goldman linked up with Fang nearly three years ago to underwrite offerings in the local Chinese market, the Wall Street Journal said. Goldman lent Fang $100 million to set up a brokerage with which the U.S. firm could ally, the newspaper said.
It is unclear whether Fang will maintain a formal relationship with Goldman, and if he leaves, the Wall Street firm may not take a big hit, the newspaper said. It is also unclear how much business Fang has won for Goldman since the partnership began, the Journal said.
It's also not clear whether Fang's securities firm would want to maintain its share in the joint venture, and if so, it might try to exercise control against Goldman's will, the newspaper said.