Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is expanding across the Middle East as growing foreign interest and positive economic factors prompt a boom in dealmaking and a flow of funds into the region.

The Wall Street firm sees private wealth as a “big area of opportunity” and is hiring wealth managers in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, Zaid Khaldi, co-head of Goldman Sachs in the Middle East and North Africa, said in an interview. The bank is also recruiting for investment banking, sales and trading, as well as for Islamic finance, where it’s seeing rapid growth, Khaldi said, without giving specifics.

“Money is coming in because of the positive macro, it makes sense for money to be deployed here and there is growth,” said Khaldi. In Saudi Arabia — the region’s largest market, Goldman Sachs has “more than doubled” its head count in recent years and plans to move into a bigger office next year to “have more capacity to grow further,” he said.

Flush with cash from a commodity boom and home to some of the world’s biggest sovereign funds that control more than $3 trillion in assets, the Persian Gulf is emerging as a bright spot globally for initial public offerings and merger and acquisitions. To capture the flurry of activity — as deals dry up in other parts of the world — banks including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Rothschild & Co. are also expanding in the region.

Elsewhere, many global banks have been eliminating jobs in their investment-banking operations following a drought in dealmaking. Goldman Sachs recently embarked on its biggest round of job cuts since the start of the pandemic, when it resumed the firm’s practice of periodically culling underperformers to make way for new talent. It also started axing at least 25 investment bankers in Asia.

Dozens of positions at New York-based Citigroup Inc. were cut last week, while reductions that are expected to eventually total about 200 have begun at London-based Barclays Plc.

In the Middle East, Khaldi expects this year’s rush of initial public offerings to continue into 2023 as the demand for regional assets grows and more private companies come to the market. Goldman Sachs has several mandates for IPOs which should come to the market in the next 12 months, and the retail sector is expected to be particularly active, he said.

Persian Gulf listings have fetched about $18 billion this year, just under half of the listing proceeds from across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Demand is coming from both local and international buyers, with local demand particularly strong, Khaldi said.