Blackstone Eyes $2 Billion For Asia Real-Estate Fund

Dec 11 2012 | 10:29am ET

The Blackstone Group aims to raise at least $2 billion for its first real-estate fund focused on Asia.

The alternative investments giant's first foray into the space will focus on Japan, China, Australia and India. "We're now starting an Asian real-estate fund," Blackstone President Tony James said last week. "These are unique products, and they're unique products in an asset class that investors increasingly want. It's hard assets."

James added, "there is not another Pan-Asian real-estate fund in existence."

Blackstone hasn’t decided on a precise target for the new fund yet, Bloomberg News reports.

While the fund is a first for Blackstone, it is no stranger to the Asia-Pacific real-estate space. The firm took over more than $2 billion in such assets from Bank of America two years ago, and has been a major investor in properties in Australia and India.

"We have a virtually unique position, James said. "Before the meltdown in real estate, our key competitors were Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers. They are all out of the business."

"I have never seen, almost or very rarely in any market do you see a huge market where it is simultaneously a great time to buy and a great time to sell. That is what real estate is today. It is a golden moment."

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