During his 15 years in London, John Thornton, Goldman Sachs' president and co-chief operating officer, has been instrumental in changing the face of investment banking. He is now heading back to the States, where he is tipped to take up a new role as chief executive of the investment bank when Hank Paulson retires in two years time.
Thornton is an engaging, if intimidating fellow. He denies the widely-quoted story that he told an industrialist that he would slit the throats of his team and drink their blood if they did not win a particular mandate. He is also believed to have called up a subordinate 6 times on his wedding day to talk about a deal.
Thornton has spent the last 10 years as a roving ambassador for Goldman and is not thought to spend too much time focussing on deals.