Angelo, Gordon global RE head passes away

Keith Barket, global head of real estate at the New York-based firm, has passed away after succumbing to stomach cancer.

Keith Barket, global head of New York-based private equity and real estate firm Angelo, Gordon & Co, has passed away, aged 49.

He died of peritoneal mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer of the abdominal lining, on Wednesday 22 December. He was remembered at a mass at New York’s Church of St Ingatius Loyala the following Friday.

St Louis-born Barket had more than 20 years of experience in direct real estate investing and operating real estate companies, during his career and was involved in more than $10 billion of deals.

A senior managing director at the firm and member of its executive committee, Barket was widely regarded as a driving force behind the firm’s ascension as one of the world’s largest private equity real estate businesses.

He has been accredited for ensuring the firm remained relatively unscathed by the global economic downturn at a time when many of the firm’s rivals have suffered.

Last April, the firm was ranked 24th in the 2010 PERE rankings having raised $3.4 billion of equity over the previous five years. Barket was particularly driven in increasing the firm’s exposure to Asia where it went on to close on another $600 million for its second Asia fund last October.

According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, the firm has invested more than $1 billion in approximately 50 transactions in the past 18 months.

Barket joined the firm in 1997 after an eight-year spell as a principal at Amerimar Realty Company where is invested and co-managed a $1 billion real estate portfolio.  During that time, he partnered Angelo, Gordon, an experience which led to his hire. His role before Amerimar was as a senior tax accountant at Arthur Anderson & Co.

Barket is survived by wide, Laura, and two children, Madeleine and Jack, his father Keith, mother Virginia, brother Sol and sister Kimberly.