Wall Street rising stars — SPAC power players — KPMG layoffs


Happy Saturday!

Special-purpose acquisition companies — aka "blank-check" companies — are having a moment on Wall Street. The investment vehicles have raised more than $40 billion already in 2020. Just this week, Playboy joined the frenzy with plans to go public via a SPAC merger, and a new SPAC ETF started trading. 

The development of the SPAC market over the past few years is often credited to sponsors of the vehicles — the people who launch them in return for a stake in the merged company once the SPAC has found a willing seller. But there's also an entire ecosystem of advisers, salespeople, and lawyers increasingly pitching blank-check companies to investment platforms and wealthy people.

Dakin Campbell, Jack Newsham, and Alex Morrell took a look at the power players who are helping drive the SPAC boom. You can read the full story here: 

16 bankers, lawyers, and capital providers helping engineer a $40 billion blank-check craze that's fast-tracking companies to public markets

More below including this year's rising stars of Wall Street, our exclusive Goldman Sachs org chart, a deep-dive on Simon Property Group CEO David Simon, and details on layoffs at KPMG. 

Meet 2020's rising stars of Wall Street 

From helping launch game-changing groups to having a hand in restructuring entertainment giants like AMC, BI's rising stars stood out as the leaders for tomorrow.

In addition to being at the top of their class, these finalists are also trailblazing in new areas like data science and machine learning, executing on sustainability goals, and paving the way for a more diverse and equitable workforce by speaking out and taking part in recruiting efforts.

You can see our full list here. The rising stars also shared their best career advice —you can check that out here.

How real-estate titan David Simon is reshaping America's malls

Simon Property Group CEO David Simon has for years reached beyond his core business, buying retailers that occupy his company's mall spaces and branching out into other areas like e-commerce in an effort to embrace change.

Dan Geiger spoke with more than a dozen people who know and have worked with Simon to learn more about the press-shy mogul and his efforts to turn around a moribund retail industry. 

Here's how Simon is facing a make-or-break moment with a $2 billion bet on troubled JCPenney.

Goldman Sachs' power structure 

Goldman Sachs announced on Tuesday that it was shaking up its divisions and creating new units for consumer and wealth management as well as asset management. Those changes will take effect Jan. 1. 

But even before that, Goldman CEO David Solomon had made significant changes to the company's leadership team, including expanding the size of the management committee, moving a number of senior executives into chairman roles, and solidifying reporting structures. 

Dakin Campbell mapped out more than 100 of the bank's top execs. You can see the existing power structure here.

KPMG axes jobs across tax, audit, and advisory 

As Samantha Stokes reported this week, KPMG is the latest professional-services firm to lay off employees or reevaluate pay as the coronavirus pandemic has upended the economy and caused clients to rein in spending.

We have all the details, including how KPMG is also cutting some tax workers' pay.

JPMorgan inks a deal to let airlines and hotels tap their loyalty programs for capital

As Dan DeFrancesco reported this week, one of the top investment banks in the world is partnering with a startup that helps companies use their loyalty programs to raise capital from institutional lenders. 

Here's why it's a game-changer for cash-strapped companies.


  • Here's how much investment-banking associates at Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, and other big banks are getting paid
  • Wall Street's rising stars from firms like UBS, Fidelity, and Apollo share their best career advice
  • Inside this year's private-equity drama: how one PE headhunter went rogue on a pact made by the industry's power players to delay recruiting young talent


  • A Morgan Stanley trading desk headed up by a former NFL quarterback played a central role in Palantir's and Asana's public debuts

Real estate

  • Donald Trump has for years been pressuring one of New York's largest landlords for the chance to cash out a $800 million stake in 2 skyscrapers


  • The 21-page deck that Crowdz, a startup that helps small businesses finance their invoices, used to nab an extra $2 million during a 'perfect storm' for growth
  • TikTok megastar Charli D'Amelio just partnered up with a digital bank for teens backed by Nas and Will Smith. Here's how the startup is trying to grab Gen Z's attention.
  • Inside the regulatory turf war over red-hot payments startups that has the big banks and the OCC at odds with each other
  • Gusto, a $3.8 billion small-business payroll startup, is muscling in on fintechs like Earnin by adding a feature to let workers get paid early
  • $4.3 billion Marqeta is targeting a wider range of customers for its digital cards with a new 'tokenization-as-a-service' push
  • $7.1 billion Credit Karma is launching its first checking account, and execs think the new offering could be a key data source for recommending loans

Alt data

  • Wall Street's interest in geolocation data has never been higher thanks to the pandemic. 7 alt-data experts explain how it's used and what comes next.


  • New York's top judge is sticking with an online bar exam even as complaints of tech issues mount and other states let law grads skip the test and still practice law
  • We're tracking which top law firms are delaying their first-year associate classes. Here's what you need to know about new start dates, pay, and benefits.

Odd lots

  • Rent the Runway CEO Jennifer Hyman, one of the most successful female founders, is fighting to save her company
  • Red Bull names its first Black CMO and shakes up its marketing team after internal Black Lives Matter controversy
  • Meet the man who hooks up ultrawealthy Americans with the 2nd passports they need to leave the country. An island in the Caribbean is his most in-demand location.
  • 30 young leaders who are forging a new future for healthcare in the pandemic's shadow

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