Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Who will replace Stephen Schwarzman at Blackstone Group?

Blackstone is a premier global investment and advisory firm that strives to provide solutions that create lasting value for its investors, the companies in which it invests, and society at large. Yeah, you read it right: society at LARGE. These guys aren't messing around.

Stephen A. Schwarzman is chairman, CEO, and co-founder of Blackstone. He has been involved in all phases of the firm's development since its founding in 1985. Yeah, you read it right: chairman, CEO, and co-founder. Not exactly a lightweight. A serious guy. He ain't messing a-ROUND, although we may be able to arrange something.

However, all good things must come to an end. Stephen will have to retire sooner or later. Some idiot has said that he will die at his desk. My God! There's no need for that! Mr Schwarzman has done everything that capitalism requires. He has been a faithful servant. I can't believe the heartlessness of some people!

So, who will replace him? Will it be Joe Baratta, Blackstone's global head of private equity? No. Will it be Tony James, president and chief operating officer? No, it won't. Or will it be Bennett Goodman, Jonathan Gray, Tom Hill, Laurence Tosi, Joan Solotar? No, none of them losers. How do I know? Well, Stephen has asked me to headhunt someone, someone mystical - a shaman, in fact. He said to me: 'Mikey, get me a financial shaman, a good one. That will upset the squares! Let's do something they won't expect.'

There's no rush though. Stephen has given me a couple of years. I have one or two shamans in mind. But I'm willing to accept CVs. Dear reader, if you're an experienced senior financial shaman who wants to be a chief executive, get in touch. You'll need to be a veteran of the desert, astral and physical. And I'll need to have heard of you. I don't mind strangers from a strange land, but they can't be such strange strangers that I've never heard of them. Mr Schwarzman is relying on me.