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Blackstone Group

  1. Blackstone Group Co-founder Peter Peterson Dies at 91Peterson “lived a long, wonderful life that embodied the American Dream,” his family said in a statement.
  2. Stuyvesant Town Sale Will Keep Half of the Complex AffordableWell, for another 20 years, anyway.
  3. Private Equity Titans Given Briefing on Their Pending Takeover of Antarctica By penguins!
  4. Let Us Eat Cake: Undercover at the Blackstone Holiday PartyUsing the old pretend-to-be-on-the-phone trick.
  5. Shh, No One Tell Yahoo About the Buyout — AOL Wants It to Be a SurpriseWill they or won’t they?
  6. The Night Byron Wien, in a Sparkly Red Vest, Urged Us to Buy GoldThe Blackstone vice-chairman gives us financial advice.
  7. Peter Peterson, the Genius Pigpen of BlackstoneHe would arrive at meetings with yellow Post-It notes adorning his suit jacket, placed there by his secretary to remind him to attend some charity ball or to call a CEO the next morning.”
  8. Hitler Comparisons That, Even Compared to Other Ridiculous Hitler Comparisons, Are Over-the-TopSteve Schwarzman goes for hyperbole gold.
  9. Steve Schwarzman Is Selling His Hamptons Pied-à-TerreIt’s going for $7.2 million, which is less than one quarter of what his REAL house costs.
  10. Meredith Vieira Officially More Powerful Than Katie CouricAccording to ‘Forbes,’ at least. Plus, today’s real estate, law, media, and financial news.
  11. Fannie and Freddie Get Some Good NewsThe mortgage giants have seen their largest profits in ten years. Plus, who buys a friend a $3 million apartment, and who wants a truck depot in Soho?
  12. Washington ‘Post’ to Other Papers: Don’t Ditch D.C.!An axed Maine political reporter writes to tell how local papers that close their Washington bureaus are hurting the cause of democracy. Plus, the latest in finance, law, media, and real-estate news.
  13. ‘People’ Gets the Last Giggle Over Brangelina Baby PicsTurns out the issue whose cover displayed little Vivienne and Knox sold 2.6 million copies, the fourth-largest selling issue of all time for the mag. Plus, the rest of our industry news roundup.
  14. McCain Campaign Rewarding Commenting SpammersPlus, the latest on Wall Street, Gold Street, and your street, in our daily industry roundup.
  15. If Martha Stewart Had Only One Arm, How Would She Garden and Decoupage?Martha Stewart’s arm appeared missing in a broadcast this morning, worrying the nation. Then it came back, and we were relieved. But there’s still lots to worry about in our daily roundup of media, finance, real-estate, and law news.
  16. There May Be a Day When Port Authority Is Nice to Look AtWe know, we know — dare to dream, right? But there are proposals to build above it, and the renderings look lovely. Plus, news from the finance, law, real estate and media industries, in our daily roundup.
  17. Horizon Strategy’s John Devaney Says He Is ‘Bleeding, Personally’ After Loss of Hedge FundClearly, he doesn’t know Daily Intel’s golden rule. That and more, in our daily roundup of need-to-know news from the fields of finance, media, law, and real estate.
  18. Ashley Alexandra Dupré Drops Suit Against ‘Girls Gone Wild’Technically, the famous call girl is forced to admit, she exploited herself. Plus! Boutique hotels in Brooklyn are fighting, NBC gets a bargain on the Weather Channel, and we all may all end up paying for the Fed bailout of Bear Stearns, in our daily roundup of law, real estate, media and finance news.
  19. Breaking: Wasps Find Jews VulgarJamie Johnson is tries to get rich Wasps to be anti-Semitic, but they’re too Waspy.
  20. Right Now, Sean Avery Is Getting Anna Wintour StarbucksThe injured Ranger begins his tour of duty at ‘Vogue,’ Carl Icahn’s battle with Yahoo heats up, and Donald Trump is in another fight … in today’s roundup of media, finance, real-estate and law news.
  21. If Murdoch Really Hires a New ‘WSJ’ Managing Editor, Who Will It Be?Citigroup’s ban on fruit, ice-cream-truck wars, praise for Frank Gehry, and more in our daily industry roundup.
  22. He’s an Icahnimal!Carl Icahn may be getting ready to sink his teeth into Yahoo, ‘Newsday’ girds intself for new ownership, and ‘Vogue’ editor Hamish Bowles within prime stalking distance of Daily Intel editor Chris Rovzar in our daily roundup of finance, media, law, and real-estate news.
  23. ‘National Geographic’ Takes Home Three Awards at ASME CeremonyPlus, things are looking up on Wall Street, Skadden is doing better at doing good, and Andre Balazs finally sells the Hotel QT — all in our daily industry roundup.
  24. Okay, Okay, We Get It: You’re Offended by Miley CyrusAlso, the latest on what Nina Garcia, Robert Thomson, Ben Stein, and Kevin Spacey have been up to, in our daily news roundup.
  25. Rupert Murdoch Is Full of Vim, Vigor and Probably ViagraThe media mogul seems gleeful about life (and also his wife!) in a ‘Newsweek’ profile, Bank of America’s CEO is startled by losses, a fifth-grade graduation ceremony gets ugly, and a hedge-funder pays $801,000 for a literal closet in today’s collection of media, finance, law, and real-estate news.
  26. Private Equity Switches to the Full-Court PressPlus, what’s going on at ‘Portfolio,’ why you’ll be hearing more from Perez Hilton, and where the Beatrice Inn is headed next.
  27. New York Newspapers Tanking More Slowly Than Papers ElsewhereMEDIA • Of the top twenty American newspapers, the circulation of New York ones suffered less than others over the past few years. [Mixed Media/Portfolio] • We hear … that gossip Website Jossip.com is up for sale. [NYP] • And that ESPN The Magazine is beefing up its fashion coverage. [WWD]
  28. Angelo Mozilo Just Wants to Help PeopleLAW • After testifying in front of the House Committee on Government and Oversight Reform last week about the gargantuan pay package he picked up while his company hemorrhaged money, Countrywide CEO Angelo Mozilo made Congress a nice little offer: “Mr. Mozilo said he had left a card in each Congressional office with a help line for constituents having problems with their loans. He added that if the number didn’t work, “call me— I take this very seriously.’” [NYT] • Since the federal death-penalty statute was revived in 1998, New York federal juries have been reluctant to impose the death sentence. [NYT] • You know those ads for legal firms in the Metro? Yeah, they’re really not all that effective. [Legal Blog Watch]
  29. Another Sad Day for SchwarzmanFINANCE • Where has all of Steve Schwarzman’s money gone? A report saying that his fund would earn less than half of what was predicted caused Blackstone’s stock price to tumble. [NYP] • Former Countrywide Financial, Citigroup, and Merrill Lynch execs get ready to explain to Congress why they got huge paychecks as their shareholders lost billions. [DealBook/NYT] • Financier Carl Icahn ups his stake in Motorola. [DealBook/NYT]
  30. CEO Astrology: Reading the Stars for Barry Diller, John Thain, Chuck Prince, and Steve SchwarzmanMany of you know celebrity astrologer Susan Miller as the uncannily accurate predictor of your fate. You’re in good company: She’s got A-listers like Kirsten Dunst and Orlando Bloom paying her to do their charts and gets fifteen million page views a month on her Website, Astrologyzone. She’s asked to analyze the stars for actors, musicians, and starlets all the time — but when we got the chance to talk with her, we wanted to know what the future holds for a group of guys even nearer and dearer to our heart. Guys like embattled IAC CEO Barry Diller, Blackstone CEO Steven Schwarzman, ousted Citigroup CEO Chuck Prince, and Merrill Lynch newbie John Thain. After all, these people have much more power to wreak havoc in our lives if the stars choose not to shine on them. After the jump, read Miller’s uncannily prescient analysis (it would be more precise if she knew the times of day they were born) and learn what warnings these four financial powerhouses need to heed if they want to come out of 2008 on top.
  31. Steve Schwarzman Endeavors To Look More HumanBlackstone honcho Stephen Schwarzman seems to be conducting a little public-relations campaign to sweeten his image. Fresh off a New Yorker profile in which “the designated villain of an era on Wall Street” came across as semi-endearing, he took the Times along on a trip to the Sacred Heart School in the Bronx, to which he recently gave $5 million. “I used to do homework and got a 90, but not much above that,” Uncle Stevie told one fourth-grader he has reportedly been corresponding with, according to the Times. “But I couldn’t get 96’s like you did.” Explaining why he had chosen this school, which is run by the archdiocese, to bestow his wealth, the gagillionaire cited the 98 percent graduation rate and the diverse population. Then, for a second, the old Schwarzman sneaked out: “You can fire people,” he said. “It’s nonunion.” Schwarzman’s School Ties [DealBook/NYT] Earlier: On the Inside, Steve Schwarzman Is Still Just a Short Kid From Philly
  32. Just in Time for ‘Times’ McCain Scuffle, ‘Time’ Editor Says Papers Shouldn’t Endorse CandidatesMEDIA • What is the New York Police Department’s policy for awarding press credentials? Journalists wonder the same thing. [NYT] • Time managing editor Rick Stengel ponders why newspapers endorse political candidates at a time when news consumers doubt the objectivity of the media. [Time] • Details of the deal that Newsweek struck with George W. Bush’s former brain have emerged: It’s a two-year, sixteen-column contract. [NYO]
  33. Eli Manning’s Little Town Blues Have Melted AwayEli Manning and Yogi Berra sang “New York, New York” together at Rao’s. Male madam David Forest says Marc Jacobs used to employ his services. Mariah Carey shot a video on the rooftop of Lenny Kravitz’s Crosby Street apartment. Mayor Bloomberg celebrated his 65th birthday with Steven Ratner and others at Michael’s. R.E.M. front man Michel Stipe got into a go-cart accident two weeks ago but is fine now. Blackstone Group co-founder Pete Peterson sold his River House digs to financier Jeffrey Leeds for $10 million.
  34. The Internet Wishes Steve Schwarzman a ‘Happy’ BirthdayStephen Schwarzman’s 60th-birthday party at the Park Avenue Armory last year, replete with its lobsters and baked Alaska, Patti LaBelle and Rod Stewart, has, fairly or unfairly, become a symbol of the wealth and self-indulgence of the private-equity set and made the Blackstone CEO “the designated villain of an era on Wall Street,” as James Stewart put it recently in The New Yorker. Exactly one year later, with the country in the midst of a credit crunch on the verge of a recession, people across the Internet are heralding Schwarzman’s birthday as a turning point and offering the multi-billionaire some very special birthday wishes — with a side of Schadenfreude. Reuters gloatingly notes that “Blackstone’s stock hasn’t topped its opening day price, politicians have proposed restrictions on the industry’s tax status, and a credit crunch has made financing deals difficult” in an article headlined “Happy Birthday, Mr. Schwarzman.” Portfolio made a musical, interactive card that readers can use to send him messages. “Still down with EOP? :)” says one signed “Sam.”
  35. On the Inside, Steve Schwarzman Is Still Just a Short Kid From Philly Blackstone CEO and co-founder Steve Schwarzman comes across almost like a real-live human being in James B. Stewart’s profile of him in this week’s New Yorker, which traces the titan’s childhood as the son of a dry-goods store owner in suburban Philadelphia (at 15, he is stymied by his father’s reluctance to expand said store into a national chain, “like Sears”) through the infamously lavish 60th-birthday party that helped make Schwarzman the poster child for greed and self-indulgence of the new gilded age. But despite the fact that he has a net worth of at least $10 billion, “I don’t feel like a wealthy person,” Schwarzman tells Stewart, cracking a window into his psyche. Contrary to his actions, he’s also not entirely obtuse: “Private equity is seen as a symbol of the people who are prospering from a world in flux. That’s a lightning-rod situation.”
  36. At Least Sam Zell Is Pragmatic About the Fact That Most Journalists Are Functional AlcoholicsMEDIA • Sam Zell, the real-estate tycoon turned media mogul, took his brusque, fake-folksy style to his minions at the Tribune with a new employee manual. A few samples: “7.1. If you use or abuse alcohol or drugs and fail to perform the duties required by your job acceptably, you are likely to be terminated. … Coming to work drunk is bad judgment. 7.2. If you do not use or abuse alcohol or drugs and fail to perform the duties required by your job acceptably, you are likely to be terminated.” Also, “You may want to think twice before you enter into an intimate relationship with a co-worker. When you start, it might seem like a good idea. It’s when you stop, or the wrong people find out (and they will) that you could discover that perhaps it wasn’t.” [WP, Tribune] • Judith Regan on Giuliani: “Is he getting uglier? Is his face looking more twisted? What happened to him?” Don’t feel too bad, Rudy. You know what they say: When someone teases you like this, it means she likes you. [Mixed Media/Portfolio] • Facebook threatened to revoke Nick Denton’s account after the blog-lord posted pics of Steve Brill’s recent-college-grad daughter Emily. [Gawker, Daily Brief/Portfolio]
  37. Pandit and Willumstad to Share the Ultimate Power?FINANCE • The newest Citigroup rumors suggest a “tag team at the top”: Financial whiz Vikram Pandit will take over as CEO, while the more socially astute Robert Willumstad handles chairman duties. We’re just not sure “tag team” means the same thing for us as it does the Times? [DealBook/NYT] • Morgan Stanley issued a full recession alert for the U.S. economy today in the oh-so-subtly titled “Recession Coming.” Meanwhile, a recent Journal poll of top economists puts the risk of recession at 38 percent. [Telegraph, WSJ] • Thirtysomething Blackstone real-estate guru Jonathan Gray is getting rather comfortable in the top tier of the young establishment. [DealBook/NYT]
  38. Is Kate Beckinsale Too Hot to Play Judy Miller?MEDIA • Matt Drudge cracked open The New Republic’s Iraq fabulist controversy once again. Did the mag’s Baghdad diarist really make up details about mass graves and troops ridiculing a disfigured female soldier? Franklin Foer complains that Drudge’s docs could only have come from the Army. [Slate, NYO] • Chris Jones, the managing editor of Portfolio.com, announced his departure from the mag after giving notice over a month ago. High-level rumors also indicate Joanne Lipman may soon be relieved from command — but only for the Website. [WWD] • The Judith Miller movie is now filming in Memphis, and let’s just say that Kate Beckinsale is way too hot to be a reporter. On the other hand, the Valerie Plame CIA character, played by Vera Farmiga, looks just about right. [WP]
  39. Rupert Murdoch and the ‘Journal’ Eye WashingtonMEDIA • Murdoch’s WSJ plans to take on the Times’ Washington bureau. What’s next, Hollywood? [NYO] • Jeff Zucker and NBC bought Oxygen, the cable network for bored housewives, at the bargain-basement price of $925 million. [NYT] • CNN’s Rick Sanchez has one big skeleton in his closet. After drinking a little too much at a Dolphins game, the eight o’clock anchor did a hit-and-run on a pedestrian who later died from his injuries. “It could have happened to anybody … There were probably a lot of other people leaving the stadium that had had a couple of beers as well.” No wonder he was nicknamed Miami’s “Least Credible News Personality.” [NYO]
  40. When All Fails, What Else? A Country SongFINANCE • The nation’s largest mortgage lender, Countrywide Financial, almost out of credit. Oh. No. [NYP] • Recent hedge-fund woes look far from contained — they’ve even inspired a country song. [DealBook/NYT] • Chuck Schumer’s bright new plan for taxing private equity: raise taxes on all partnerships, not just big firms like Blackstone. How Democratic. [Reuters via DealBook/NYT]
  41. Bear Stearns Execs Cashed Out Before Stock DroppedFINANCE • James Cayne and three other top Bear Stearns execs cashed out $57 million in stock before the bank took a nose dive, pawning off $16 million in losses on regular investors. [TheStreet.com via DealBreaker] • With Ellyn McColgan’s departure, Fidelity president Rodger Lawson has gone from new guy in town to likely successor. [Boston Globe via DealBook/NYT] • Blackstone raised $21.7 billion for its latest private-equity fund. Apparently drumming up the last $6 billion was pretty tough. Cue the violins! [Deal Journal/WSJ]
  42. It’s Expensive Being Rupert MurdochMEDIA • Did Dow Jones cost Rupert Murdoch an extra $1 billion just because he’s Rupert Murdoch? [Slate] • Rik Hertzberg to blog for The New Yorker. From YearlyKos. And without fact-checking. [
  43. Paris Cheered by Blackstone BidFINANCE • Did Steve Schwarzman’s bid for Hilton Hotels help bring Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan back together again? [Gossip Girls via DealBreaker] • She might not be so hot at spotting WMD, but former CIA big shot Jami Miscik is good enough to be the “global head of sovereign risk” at Lehman. [Fortune] • Threatening letters against Goldman Sachs continue to turn up at newspapers; Feds now investigating disgruntled former employees. [NYP]
  44. Hedge Funds Open to Petty CommonersFINANCE • Steve Schwarzman’s company may be public, but the Blackstone head retreated and declined to ring the opening bell at the NYSE this morning. [NYP] • The Supreme Court made it harder for investors to sue companies and executives for suspected fraud. [NYT] • The Wharton School hired a marketing guy as its next dean. Rich alums, hold on to your wallets. [DealBook/NYT]
  45. A Last-Minute Bid for TribuneMEDIAL.A. Billionaires Ron Burkle and Eli Broad jumped back into the Tribune contest, offering $1 per share more than Sam Zell. [NYT] • After Joy Press left for Salon, new Voice editor Tony Ortega rehired former editor Brian Parks to edit the arts and culture section. [Eat the Press/HP] • Former Times public editor Dan Okrent appears in the upcoming film The Hoax, playing a publishing exec engaged in fraud. [WWD]
  46. Want a Raise? Move to LondonFINANCE • Another point for London: U.K. traders average salaries and bonuses 50 percent higher than their U.S. counterparts. [Bloomberg] • Everyone has a theory about why Goldman and J.P. Morgan were shut out of Blackstone Group’s IPO, but who’s right? [Deal Journal/WSJ] • Ernst & Young was censured and sanctioned by the SEC on Monday for alleged violations of auditor-independence rules. This was the second slap against the accounting firm in nearly three years. [AP via Forbes]
  47. Ad Agencies Better Figure Out the Internet Right QuickMEDIA • Nike abandons its longtime ad agency Wieden + Kennedy to search for a more digital-savvy firm; Madison Avenue fears its own Internet ignorance. [WSJ] • Has Tribune Co. finally settled on Sam Zell as a buyer? [WSJ] • Sharing a Daytime Emmy with another winner? The National Academy of TV Arts & Sciences is charging $350 for a second statuette. [Variety via Mediabistro] • Life magazine is dead for the third time. Time Inc. announced today that it will discontinue the Life Sunday newspaper supplement on April 20. [Time Inc.]
  48. Goldman’s Sudden Inferiority ComplexIt used to be that if you landed yourself a job at Goldman Sachs, you were a prince of Wall Street, the envy of everyone you knew. But these days, the folks at Goldman are probably starting to feel like every other chump who isn’t a hedge-fund manager or private-equity kingpin. In an SEC filing yesterday confirming its plans to go public, private-equity house Blackstone Group declared that its employees, on average, generate nine times more earnings than the rank and file at Goldman Sachs. Blackstone has 770 employees, each of whom produced an average of $2.95 million in net income last year, for a total of $2.27 billion. Production from Goldmanites was a relatively paltry $360,000. Could it be? A Goldman employee is worth just one-ninth of a Blackstone employee? Wall Streeters are yammering away about the fact that Goldman Sachs isn’t one of Blackstone’s underwriters, either. The smart money says it’s because Goldman is likely working on another private-equity shop’s IPO, perhaps that of Kohlberg, Kravis & Roberts (KKR). Or it could just be that the folks at Blackstone don’t do business with people who don’t know how to put up the big numbers. —Duff McDonald Blackstone Workers Produce Nine Times More Profit Than Goldman [Bloomberg] Blackstone Group LP’s S-1 Filing[EDGAR/SEC]
  49. Gareth Pugh Dazzles But Doesn’t SellFASHION • Gareth Pugh, the darling of London Fashion Week, has yet to turn his critical acclaim into commercial success — he hasn’t sold one dress. [British Vogue] • Pete Doherty continues his rise from junkie rocker to fashion “It” boy as he graces the cover of this month’s Vogue Homme. [WWD] • St. John’s abandons its youth outreach program — sexier, fitted clothing modeled by Angela Jolie — and returns to its conservative, older-woman roots. [LAT]
  50. Top Moneymaker Leaves LehmanFINANCE • Lehman lost its top-producing banker on Friday to a sudden resignation. Was Woody Young passed over for head of the finance group? [NYT] • Monday morning got you feeling uninspired? Ninja Stockbroker will return you to market-high glory. [Nova Cartoons via DealBreaker] • Fresh off its blowout purchase of Equity Office, the Blackstone Group scoops up Pinnacle Foods (Duncan Hines, Vlasic) for $2.16 Billion. [AP via CBS News]
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