Details Emerge of Blackstone, Wells Fargo's GE Real Estate Deal
Blackstone is the world's largest private equity real estate investor. But the April deal to acquire $23B worth of GE's real estate portfolio proved too big even for Blackstone real estate unit head Jon Gray. So Gray made a call to Timothy Sloan, head of wholesale banking at Wells Fargo, looking for a partner. "He called me up and we decided to partner and we began working on the opportunity later that evening,” Sloan said today at an investor conference. Gray confirmed to Bloomberg that "there is no way we could have gotten the GE deal done without Wells and Tim’s leadership.’’
The blockbuster deal calls for Wells Fargo to pick up GE's real estate mortgages on US, UK and Canadian commercial properties while Blackstone buys the conglomerate's American real estate holdings. GE had been looking to shed risky real estate assets amid the company's stagnant stock performance and redirect attention to its industrial core.