Stephen Schwarzman

  • 25 Sep 2014 at 9:15 AM

Caption Contest Thursday: It’s Showtime


[via @blackstone]

SeaWorld Entertainment’s Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin attraction, opening today at the company’s namesake theme park in Orlando, features 50-foot glaciers, 2,500 glass icicles and up-close encounters with 230 penguins, dusted daily with 6,000 pounds of snow. “It is the coolest attraction in the world,” President and Chief Executive Officer Jim Atchison said in an interview. “You kind of check out of the rest of SeaWorld and find yourself in Antarctica.” To Atchison, it’s also an example of how private-equity firms, often criticized for dismantling the companies they buy, can jumpstart a business like SeaWorld. Blackstone Group LP bought the company, which owns 11 parks in five states, for $2.3 billion from Anheuser-Busch InBev NV in December 2009. As a small part of the world’s largest brewer, SeaWorld was starved. Atchison, who took Orlando, Florida-based SeaWorld public last month in an $807 million share sale, called the last years under the brewer’s ownership “a drought period.” [Blackstone] gave Atchison, who has held executive roles with SeaWorld since 1998, the go-ahead to crank up capital spending — from $120 million in 2010 to $225 million the following year and $192 million in 2012. [Bloomberg, related]


[via cgasparino]

  • 18 Jan 2013 at 12:25 PM

Caption Contest Friday


A couple of SeaWorld employees during yesterday’s visit to Blackstone, which owns the animal theme parks/oceanariums/marine mammal burlesque theaters/what have you. Whether it was nerves over being in the presence of the boss or simply a matter of not being housebroken, the duo “left some unsolicited presents on a carpet and a conference table,” Dealbook reported, which seems a bit uncalled for to us. They were embarrassed enough! No need to tell the whole world. Read more »


Schwarzman and his wife, Christine, as “French devils” last night. [Bloomberg, Earlier: The Blackstone founder’s documented love of Halloween; seriously, you will not meet a PE exec, hedge fund manager, man, woman, or child who gets as excited about the holiday as Mr. Steve. Talking $4 million crab claw-levels excited.]

When Blackstone Group LP named a new global head of private equity last month, Chief Executive Stephen Schwarzman was looking for more than just a business unit chief. Even though the buyout king has no plans to retire, the appointment of Joe Baratta, a 41-year-old dealmaker credited with building up the firm’s European buyouts practice, was the latest step in a wider succession plan, Blackstone insiders said. Baratta joins five other senior Blackstone executives from whose ranks the successor to Schwarzman, 65, will eventually emerge, the sources said. The others are Jonathan Gray, 42, real estate chief; Bennett Goodman, 54, co-founder of the credit business; Tom Hill, 63, who runs the hedge fund team; Laurence Tosi, 44, the chief financial officer; and Joan Solotar, 47, who spearheads investor relations, the sources said. […] “Steve will never retire; he will die at his desk,” one senior Blackstone executive said. [Reuters]

50 Shades of Grey is the first book in a trilogy about the relationship between a recent college graduate, Anastasia Steele, and a “young business magnate,” Christian Grey, the former being employed as a sex slave of the latter, who has a room in his apartment called the “Red Room of Pain,” where his sadomasichistic directives go down. The books have been dubbed “mommy porn” and are apparently huge among married women over thirty who are using the “tantalizing tale to spice up their sex lives.” Naturally, the subject came up last night at a party attended by some billionaires and their wives. Read more »

Romney will start his tour with a breakfast at Cipriani 42nd Street at $2,500 per head. Among the 80 co-hosts on the bill are Romney’s richest donor, hedge fund billionaire John Paulson, former Goldman Sachs chairman John Whitehead, Forstmann Little chairman Julian Robertson…Then, J.P. Morgan Chase vice chairman Jimmy Lee is hosting a luncheon at the Waldorf-Astoria. But the bank’s rep tells us J.P. Morgan Chase chairman and former Obama ally Jamie Dimon will not be attending. Later in the evening, Steve Schwarzman, founder of Blackstone, the world’s largest private equity firm, is hosting a more intimate event at his Park Avenue home with CEO Tom Hill, Third Point founder Dan Loeb, former Chris Christie backer and hedge fund honcho Paul Singer and former SEC chairman Richard Breeden. [NYP]