Goldberg Leaves MSDW For Own Firm –

After 22 years with Morgan Stanley Dean Witter (MSDW), the last three as chief executive and chairman of its private equity investment group, Alan Goldberg surprised colleagues this month by tendering his resignation effective in early February. Following his departure, Goldberg plans to open up his own investment shop, although no specific details about the practice or its staff have yet been disclosed.

“I feel I have had one of the best jobs on Wall Street at the greatest firm, and while my decision to leave was difficult, it has always been a dream of mine to run my own business, and this is the right time to take this step,” Goldberg said in a prepared statement. “I look forward to assisting [MSDW] in an orderly transition process, and hope to continue my association with MSDW as a client of the firm.”

The specifics of that transition still need to be worked out, however, a successor has yet to be identified. A company spokesperson declined to comment on whether or not the eventual replacement would come from inside the firm.

Whoever does take over the MSDW practice will immediately be charged with reversing a declining earnings trend. Last quarter, the group joined many of its peers by recording a $77 million paper loss due, primarily, to the market misfortunes of its public portfolio companies.

Such stock market cycles notwithstanding, Goldberg feels he has left the firm in fine working order. “I know I am leaving MSDW’s private equity business in great shape, with a deep bench of talent that can lead the business to evenhigher levels of success,” he said.