Steve staying cool

In these tougher times for the LBO fraternity, we might have feared that some of the industry's more exalted figures would no longer attract such keen interest from gossip columnists. Such worries appear premature – although the bar may have just been raised a notch or two in terms of what it takes to stay in the spotlight. In its 2 August edition, the New York Post's page 6 (the point of reference for New York celebrity gossip) led with news that Blackstone Group boss Stephen Schwarzman had been spotted at fashionable nightspot the VIP Room in St Tropez on the French Riviera. According to the report, Schwarzman “was staying cool … while his wife Christine and two blond friends … danced together like the Pussycat Dolls”.

“Prohibiting legitimate placement agents from working with public pension funds is an extreme measure that will have unintended consequences; that is, it will reduce our ability to access some of the best managers throughout the world and ultimately result in lower investment returns for our members.”

Rick Dahl, CIO, Missouri State Employees Retirement System, also submits comments to the SEC

“He feels that the Treasury's game plan is like trying to reduce the charge from murder to manslaughter. Mandelson wants to get rid of the charge.”

London's Times newspaper quotes a UK Treasury source discussing First Secretary Lord Mandelson's apparent determination to fight the proposed EU Alternative Investment Directive more aggressively than the Treasury has done to date

“This market has the most volume we've ever seen, but also the least closable volume.”

Marleen Groen, chief executive of London-based secondaries investor Greenpark Capital, pondering the lack of deals in the secondaries market despite deal flow appearing to be strong (see p.39)

“For [LP investment] committees, carry and fees have become a bit of a lightning rod – almost irrationally so, almost divorced from net returns and whether a firm charges management fees or not.”

Brian Conway, managing director of Boston-based private equity firm TA Associates, which recently closed its 11th growth capital fund on its $4 billion hard cap speaking to PrivateEquityOnline. The firm reduced its carried interest rate on the fund from 25 percent to 20 percent