The Blackstone Group LP reported lower than expected earnings for the third quarter yesterday, but the company tried to put a positive spin on the announcement. The firm declared that it is positioned to put $42.3 billion in undrawn investor capital to work.
Blackstone reported an earnings per share of just $0.66 which is six cents lower than the Street’s estimate of $0.72. Its total revenue did increase by 34% from $1.23 billion to $1.65 billion. Its advisory and management fees rose 18.3% to $658 million from $555 million in the same quarter last year.
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Stephen A. Schwarzman, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, “I am pleased with our third quarter results, which marked a record third quarter and year-to-date period for both economic net income and distributable earnings. Strong investment performance continued to attract significant capital inflows, with total capital raised of $13 billion in the quarter and $55 billion over the past year, also a record, bringing total assets under management to $284 billion, up 15% year-over-year. With one of the largest pools of available dry powder capital and the broadest alternative investment platform, we are well positioned to capitalize on the dislocation in asset values created by greater market volatility.”
Blackstone has declared a quarterly distribution of $0.44 per common unit to record holders of common units at the close of business on October 27, 2014. This distribution will be paid on November 3, 2014.
The firm will host a conference call on October 16, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. ET to discuss third quarter 2014 results.
In other Blackstone news, the firm also announced that it has acquired a significant minority stake in GEMS Education together with Fajr Capital and Mumtalakat.
GEMS Education, a UAE company founded 54 years ago, is now the world’s largest provider of K-12 private for profit education – operating more than 50 schools, with over 140, 000 students and employing over 13, 000 people across 19 markets in the Middle East, North America, Europe, Asia and Africa.
Andrea Valeri, Senior Managing Director of Blackstone Tactical Opportunities, said: “We are delighted to make this investment in GEMS and in the Middle East. GEMS has developed in to the market leader in the education sector in the region, and we look forward to working with the other shareholders and the management team as the business expands its operations.”