Blackstone agrees deal for wealth management firm

For Sale

Blackstone Group agreed to buy the European wealth-management business of Friends Life Group Ltd. for as much as $609m, the largest investment of its type for a 2-year-old unit run by David Blitzer.

Bloomberg News reports that Blackstone will pay $434.9m upfront with a deferred payment in the form of a loan note for the Lombard business, according to a statement today from Friends Life. The insurer said it plans to return $446.8m to shareholders through a share buyback.

Blackstone is making the investment through its Tactical Opportunities Group, which invests client money in deals that don’t fit traditional private-equity mandates. Lombard provides wealth planning for high and ultra-high net worth investors, a business that benefited as the number of millionaire households in the world jumped to 16.3m in 2013 from 13.7m in 2012, according to Boston Consulting Group.

To access the complete Bloomberg News article hit the link below:

Blackstone’s Tactical Fund Buying Wealth-Management Unit

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