Blackstone real estate chief now firm’s fourth billionaire

August 15, 2013 12:30PM

A property wager at Blackstone Group has pushed a fourth executive — the head of the real estate group, incidentally — past the billionaire mark, Bloomberg News reported.

Jonathan Gray, real estate division head at the biggest private-equity manager in the world, is now personally a billionaire, a year after being appointed to the board of directors. Gray, a philanthropist, is in charge of investment for a $13.3 billion real estate fund, the largest opportunistic property fund ever raised, Bloomberg said.

The 43-year-old also spearheaded the privatization of public real estate companies valued at more than $100 billion. Those companies include Hilton Hotels, Extended Stay America, Carr America and Equity Office Properties.

The real estate division is Blackstone’s largest, at $64 billion in assets.

Blackstone’s CEO Stephen Schwarzman — a resident of tony co-op 740 Park Avenue — is the world’s 151st richest person with a net worth of $8.1 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Blackstone co-founder Peter Peterson has a net worth of $1.3 billion, according to Forbes. Company president Tony James briefly breached the billionaire threshold, but his net worth has since plummeted to $850 million, reports show.

In the last week, Blackstone agreed to buy 80 apartment buildings from an arm of General Electric for $2.7 billion, and announced plans to sell the $4.5 billion La Quinta hotel chain, as previously reported. [Bloomberg News]Mark Maurer