MiB: Kathleen McCarthy, Global co-head of Blackstone Real Estate


This week, we speak with Kathleen McCarthy, the global co-head of Blackstone Real Estate. The largest owner of commercial real estate globally, Blackstone Real Estate has a $565 billion portfolio and $319 billion in investor capital under management. McCarthy previously served as Blackstone’s global chief operating officer; before joining Blackstone in 2010, she worked at Goldman Sachs.

We discuss her experiences at Goldman Sachs during the financial crisis and housing implosion. There was missed opportunity that colored her perspective on future real estate investments. The big takeaway: Properties must be robust enough with the appropriate capital structure to withstand market downturns and even the occasional disaster extraordinary disasters.

Her attraction to Blackstone post-GFC was due to those factors: The firm had lots of “dry powder, they were well-positioned to act opportunistically, and they took advantage of their own internal data creation & analytics.

Note: We recorded this in November — before the news on BREIT broke; if you are curious about this, see my response.

A list of her favorite books is here; A transcript of our conversation is available here Tuesday.

You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, Google, YouTube, Bloomberg. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here.

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business next week with Robert Koengisberger, founder and CIO of Gramercy Funds Management, which manages $5.2 billion in distressed Emerging Markets Debt. Gramercy’s chairman is (previous MiB guest) Mohamed A. El-Erian; the firm is a sponsor of the Greenwich Economic Forum.



Kathleen McCarthy’s Favorite Books

Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland by Patrick Radden Keefe

Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty by Patrick Radden Keefe

Harry Potter Paperback Box Set by J.K. Rowling

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

Matilda by Roald Dahl

The Witches by Roald Dahl

Fantastic Mr. Fox by Roald Dahl

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