Record-breaker for Blackstone

The Blackstone Group has closed the world’s largest private equity fund to date with total commitments of US$15.6bn. Blackstone Capital Partners V (BCP V), like its predecessor funds, will be invested across a broad range of sectors and geographical locations.

BCP V has already made several investments including VNU N.V. (Netherlands), Michaels Stores Inc. (USA), Cendant’s Travelport unit (Global), Encore Medical Corporation (USA), Center Parcs (UK), Emcure Pharmaceuticals Limited (India) and Deutsche Telekom A.G. (Germany), with a total enterprise value of approximately US$30bn. The combined equity value in these seven transactions already accounts for more than 25% of the new fund’s available capital.

Since The Blackstone Group started its private equity investment business in 1987, the firm has raised more than US$63bn for alternative asset investing. In the past twelve months, the firm has raised approximately US$30bn across its alternative asset investment businesses. In addition to private equity (US$15.6bn), these are real estate (US$7.2bn), corporate debt (US$2.7bn), hedge funds (US$620m) and fund-of-hedge funds (US$4bn).

Blackstone’s private equity business currently has investments in 45 portfolio companies with combined annual revenues in excess of US$72bn employing approximately 350,000 people worldwide. BCP IV, which closed in 2002 with commitments totaling US$6.45bn, is now fully invested.

Stephen A. Schwarzman, chairman & CEO of The Blackstone Group, said: “This extraordinary vote of confidence from our investors is extremely gratifying. The record-breaking amount of capital now at our disposal will allow us to undertake transactions of a size and complexity that was inconceivable just a few years ago, and at a level where there is far less competition for high quality assets.”

The Blackstone Group was assisted in its fund raising by Park Hill Group, a Blackstone affiliate.