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Blackstone's new insurance unit targets $100 billion in assets


By Joshua Franklin

(Reuters) - wants to quadruple to $100 billion the assets it manages at its new unit for insurers as it seeks to boost returns for firms struggling under low interest rates, the unit's newly appointed said on Monday.

recruited Chris Blunt, the former of New York Life's [NYLIN.UL] group, to run Solutions, a new business formed late last year when agreed to oversee $22 billion from [FGLH.UL].

"The target (for assets under management) is $100 billion," Blunt told in a telephone interview. declined to give a time frame for the target.

At the end of the third quarter, Blackstone's overall assets totaled $387 billion.

companies invest the bulk of their premiums in low-risk and set aside a smaller portion for higher-return and higher-risk strategies, such as hedge funds and

Solutions has a dual purpose, firstly giving clients a more dedicated focus to direct their across Blackstone's existing businesses, which include leveraged buyouts, real estate, credit and infrastructure.

Secondly, it will offer new at lower returns but at a lower risk in areas like high-grade private credit.

The new division underscores the willingness among major firms to tweak their investment offerings in order to attract big investor classes.

Years of low have created challenges for insurers by reducing the earnings on their investment portfolios, once a key revenue stream for both life and property casualty insurers.

"We're in an environment where insurers are finding it incredibly hard to get quality into their portfolio," Blunt said.

"There's very little yield, despite the short-term pickup in short term "

(Reporting by in New York; additional reporting by in New York; Editing by Tom Brown)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, January 09 2018. 04:10 IST