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Blackstone’s $12 Billion Gain on Hilton Shares Highest in Private Equity History

Skift Take

It’s official: The Blackstone Group is the most astute lodging investor in the world. You can’t argue the case given its profits from acquiring Hilton Worldwide in 2007, and turning it around.

— Dennis Schaal

The Blackstone Group has done pretty well so far on its 2007 acquisition of Hilton Worldwide for $26 billion as the recession kicked in — historically well.

Blackstone Group CEO Steve Schwarzman said last week that Hilton’s share price was trading at “a multiple of 2.8 times our original investment and implies a total gain of almost $12 billion, which we believe is the largest private equity gain in history.”

Hilton Worldwide shares closed July 18 at $24.55 per share.

In December 2013, after years of speculation about the timing, Hilton Worldwide raised a record $2.35 billion in an initial public offering.

As of March 31, 2014, Blackstone still beneficially owned 76.4% of Hilton Worldwide’s common stock.

In the second quarter of 2014, Blackstone sold some of its shares of Hilton for the first time, but also took out a loan against part of its holdings in Hilton, and that returned $2 billion to Blackstone’s limited partners.

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