Carlyle Group hires former FCC chairman

Genachowski, 51, who left the FCC in May after serving as chairman for four years, will focus on technology, media and telecommunications investments, the Washington, D.C.-based firm said in a statement.

“This is a signal that Carlyle intends to be more aggressive in the technology space by hiring one of the most preeminent executives and investors,” said former News Corp digital head Jon Miller, who worked with Genachowski at internet conglomerate IAC/InterActiveCorp.

Genachowski is the latest of several Washington insiders who have picked the lucrative world of private equity to cash in on their experience and connections.

Warburg Pincus LLC said last November that former U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner would join the private equity firm in March as president, while peer KKR & Co LP tapped former CIA Director David Petraeus last year as chairman of a new global institute it had set up to assess the investment implications of global issues. 

Carlyle is renowned for its connections in Washington, having in the past tapped political heavyweights, such as former U.S. President George H.W. Bush and former U.S. Secretary of State James Baker III, as advisors.

Genachowski, who oversaw FCC’s rejection of a landmark merger bid in 2011 between U.S. No. 2 wireless carrier AT&T Inc and fourth-largest provider T-Mobile USA, a unit of Deutsche Telekom, is no stranger to the private equity realm, having been special advisor to General Atlantic LLC between 2006 and 2009.

He co-founded two investment firms, LaunchBox Digital and Rock Creek Ventures, which helped to advise and launch technology companies.

A technology industry veteran, Genachowski held several positions at billionaire Barry Diller’s IAC/InterActiveCorp between 1997 and 2005, as well as seats on the boards of companies.

Carlyle completed fundraising for its latest U.S. private equity fund in November, raising $13 billion. It has deployed more than $18 billion in equity in investments in the technology, media and telecom sectors globally since its founding in 1987.

Greg Roumeliotis is a reporter for Reuters News in New York