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Jan 29, 2015

Blackstone 4th-quarter earnings drop 6 percent

Jan 29 (Reuters) – Blackstone Group LP, the world’s
largest alternative asset manager, reported a 6 percent decline
in fourth-quarter profit on Thursday as its real estate funds
appreciated less than they did a year ago.

The profit decline was smaller than most analysts expected,
as performance fees in the New York-based company’s private
equity division soared. Blackstone shares rose 1.6 percent to
$37.34 in premarket trading.

Jan 27, 2015

Exclusive: Blackstone sets up new credit fund to seek undervalued oil and gas assets

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Blackstone Group LP (BX.N: Quote, Profile, Research), the world’s largest alternative asset manager, is raising its first energy-focused credit fund, according to people familiar with the matter, the latest sign that private equity firms are seeing investment opportunities among distressed energy assets.

The move indicates Blackstone is betting that the bonds of some exploration and production companies that rode North America’s oil and natural gas boom are now undervalued, or could be in the near future, following the plunge in crude oil prices.

Jan 27, 2015

Blackstone sets up new credit fund to seek undervalued oil and gas assets

NEW YORK, Jan 27 (Reuters) – Blackstone Group LP, the
world’s largest alternative asset manager, is raising its first
energy-focused credit fund, according to people familiar with
the matter, the latest sign that private equity firms are seeing
investment opportunities among distressed energy assets.

The move indicates Blackstone is betting that the bonds of
some exploration and production companies that rode North
America’s oil and natural gas boom are now undervalued, or could
be in the near future, following the plunge in crude oil prices.

Jan 23, 2015

U.S. SEC official says private equity enforcement cases take time

NEW YORK, Jan 22 (Reuters) – A senior U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission official said on Thursday any enforcement
cases against private equity firms over how they handled fees
and expenses could take years to build.

The comments underscore the SEC’s efforts to downplay
expectations of a quick industrywide crackdown after Andrew
Bowden, a director at the SEC’s office of compliance,
inspections and examinations, warned last May that more than
half of the private equity firms the regulator had examined
showed “violations of law or material weaknesses in controls.”

Jan 22, 2015

U.S. SEC official sees no immediate crackdown on private equity

NEW YORK, Jan 22 (Reuters) – A senior U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission official said on Thursday any enforcement
cases against private equity firms over how they handled fees
and expenses could take years to build, but that may not be
necessary in many instances.

The comments underscore the SEC’s efforts to downplay
expectations of an upcoming crackdown after Andrew Bowden, a
director at the SEC’s office of compliance, inspections and
examinations, warned last May that more than half of the private
equity firms the regulator had examined showed “violations of
law or material weaknesses in controls.”

Jan 9, 2015

Low energy prices hit some Carlyle funds

Jan 9 (Reuters) – Carlyle Group LP said on Friday the
value of its natural resources-focused private equity fund
portfolio fell by 8 percent in the fourth quarter, highlighting
the impact of lower oil and natural gas prices on such
investments.

Key producers have shown no sign of cutting output in the
face of a global supply glut, driving global oil benchmarks to
their lowest since 2009, down more than 50 percent from June
levels.

Jan 7, 2015

Exclusive: Dick’s Sporting Goods explores going private – sources

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc (DKS.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) is holding early-stage conversations with a handful of buyout firms about going private, according to people familiar with the matter.

There is no formal sale process for the sporting goods retailer, these people said on Wednesday, and the Coraopolis, Pennsylvania-based company could still decide not to go forward with a deal if the preliminary talks do not pan out.

Jan 7, 2015

Dick’s Sporting Goods explores going private -sources

NEW YORK, Jan 7 (Reuters) – Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc
is holding early-stage conversations with a handful of
buyout firms about going private, according to people familiar
with the matter.

There is no formal sale process for the sporting goods
retailer, these people said on Wednesday, and the Coraopolis,
Pennsylvania-based company could still decide not to go forward
with a deal if the preliminary talks do not pan out.

Jan 7, 2015

How a Texas public pension fund dealt with an ethics dilemma

Jan 7 (Reuters) – When Teacher Retirement System of Texas’
investment chief learned that his son got an entry-level job at
Blackstone Group LP, he checked with his employer about
whether he should stay away from the public pension fund’s
investments in the world’s largest alternative asset manager.

The pension fund’s board decided Britt Harris, 56, should
remain involved but stay away from any investment decisions
involving the Blackstone division where his son, Matt Harris,
24, worked.

Jan 6, 2015

Laundry facilities company WASH explores sale: sources

By Greg Roumeliotis

(Reuters) – WASH Multifamily Laundry Systems, whose washers and dryers are used weekly by more than 5 million people in North America, is exploring a sale that could value it at more than $900 million, including debt, according to people familiar with the matter.

WASH’s private equity owner, CHS Capital, has asked investment bankers at Moelis & Co (MC.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) to run an auction for the company, the people said on Tuesday.