Ares appoints ex-Blair adviser as Europe chief

Charles Steel, also a former Carlyle executive, will be heading the US firm’s private equity operations across the Atlantic.

Ares Management, the Los Angeles-based investor, has hired Charles Steel as managing director. 

Based in London, Steel will be in charge of sourcing and monitoring private equity deals for the firm in Europe. The move is designed to help Ares invest an increasingly significant part of its $4.7 billion funds outside the United States. 

“The firm has established significant resources across its five European offices and has demonstrated a multi-year track record in this region’s corporate credit marketplace. I look forward to working with my new colleagues to source and structure compelling private equity investments,” Steel commented in a statement. 

Ares’ new recruit has an impressive CV, which most recently has included advising Tony Blair, the former UK prime minister, in his role as special representative to The Quartet, which supports economic development in the occupied territories of Palestine. 

Steel also worked at The Carlyle Group between 2001 and 2010, during which he was in charge of European buyouts, after a prior experience at Goldman Sachs’ investment banking division. 

Established in 1997 by former Apollo Management partners, Ares has $59 billion of committed capital. It invests across the capital structure, from senior debt to common equity, through different blind pool funds. 

Its Private Equity Group oversees $9 billion of committed capital. Its latest vehicle, Ares Corporate Opportunities Fund IV, held a final close on $4.7 billion in August 2012.