Naoko Associate, Equity Capital Markets Investment Banking division, Tokyo

When I first came to the firm I was extremely impressed by the speed with which all transactions were conducted. Everything was much more fast-paced than I had imagined and there was always action on the floor making it quite an exciting environment.

My Work

I am part of the Financing Group within the Investment Banking division. We advise financial companies, corporations and sponsors on financing and refinancing plans. Luckily, I am involved in equity and bond issuance as well as risk management. The trading we do is related to the risk management for Foreign Exchange (FX) volatility and interest rate volatility. One of our responsibilities is carrying out derivatives trades. The first step is to contact the structure team to identify the best hedging products. We then prepare the information and advise the client.

The work is completely based on teamwork, not just within the Financing Group but with other areas such as market side, legal, credit and compliance. As part of my derivative trading role, I am responsible for coordinating these interdivisional teams. The process is often very complicated but the collaboration among the team members leads us to successful deals. This team method is very similar for bond and equity issuance.

My Day

Right now I am working in debt finance. Several of my clients are frequent issuers and I am able to work on major deals in Japan. One of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had at the firm is working on the biggest bond issuance in Japan!

My daily responsibilities include talking with clients to find out about their thoughts, sharing these thoughts with the team, preparing informational materials requested by clients, carrying out any mandates they may have and going over the results. When my clients are satisfied, I’m satisfied.

In addition to debt finance I also work in risk management. There are many different hedging products therefore it is challenging to stay up-to-date on the latest information, however it is fun to absorb new product knowledge from the people at the firm who specialize in each particular field.

My Path

My educational path is a little unique for someone in this industry. I studied Pharmacy and Neurobiology at my university and considered working as a scientist at a pharmaceutical company but decided I wanted a career that allowed me to experience more of society and work internationally.

At that time, I visited a campus recruiting event that Goldman Sachs was attending and discovered how the finance industry is full of interesting career opportunities. After that, I visited numerous foreign investment banks in Japan, but in the end I chose Goldman Sachs for several reasons. The firm’s commitment to diversity and support for women, the high calibre of people I met throughout the interview process and the firm’s global presence appealed to me the most.

When I first came to the firm I was extremely impressed by the speed with which all transactions were conducted. Everything was much more fast-paced than I had imagined and there was always action on the floor making it quite an exciting environment.

Myself

I chose to study science because I always enjoyed biology, however I was also interested in global business. Goldman Sachs is able to provide me with the chance to do those things in an industry that I feel is a great fit for me.

This is a truly unique industry because it relates to all other industries. To those who are considering the business, I would remind you that you don’t need an extensive background in finance to succeed. There are many different opportunities requiring different skills and traits at a firm like Goldman Sachs. If you have the interest you can jump in and develop a career. The skills that you acquire here are invaluable and will help you for a long time to come and not just in the world of finance.
 

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