Blackstone Irish unit posts €25m increase in profit

The Irish subsidiary of US multinational private equity fund Blackstone paid out an interim dividend of €30m last year as its profits increased.

The company recorded an improved financial performance last year as operating profits rose to just over €25m.

New accounts filed by Blackstone/GSO Funds Management Europe Ltd show the firm’s profits increased €3m in the 12 months to the end of 2015.

Turnover — largely from advisory fees — climbed from €31m to €35m.

The Dublin-registered firm lists its principal activity as the provision of management and advisory services for collaterised loan obligations (CLOs), as well as being involved in loan workouts and restructurings.

CLOs are a type of security backed by pools of often poorly-rated corporate bonds which came to prominence in the wake of the financial crash.

They offer investors the potential for higher returns but also expose them to the bulk of the associated risk.

Blackstone, meanwhile, has become better-known in Ireland as one of the so-called vulture funds involved in buying up Irish mortgage loans.

It has also been an active investor in Irish commercial property and also made a reported €375m profit selling part of its stake in telco Eircom — now eir.

The stake was sold to New York-based hedge fund Anchorage Capital.

Blackstone/GSO paid more than €3.1m in corporation tax last year — an increase of about €200,000 on the previous year’s total.

It recorded an after-tax profit of €21.9m.

Assets under management amounted to €4.1bn compared to €3.1bn at the end of 2014.

Directors’ emoluments decreased by more than €400,000 during the year.

In total, the company’s directors received €2.3m during 2015.

Directors’ pension costs amounted to €38,462 compared to €55,756 in 2014.

Staff wages and salaries increased by approximately €1m to €6.65m while employee pension contributions cost the company €280,290.

The Irish firm’s parent company, Blackstone Group is the world’s largest private equity firm.


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