Carlyle chairman relinquishes post

Former IBM chief Louis Gerstner will step down as the global private equity and real estate firm’s chairman after five years. He will remain a senior advisor to the firm’s Asia, Europe, Japan and US buyout funds.

Louis Gerstner, chairman of The Carlyle Group, has retired from the  post he has held since 2003. A successor has not been named.

Gerstner initially made a one-year commitment to Carlyle but remained on for five before stepping down to fulfill other goals and interests, he said in a statement.

“Lou joined Carlyle at a critical time in our global growth and development, helping us to institutionalize and mature key aspects of the firm,” Carlyle co-founder Daniel D’Aniello said in statement.

Gerstner will remain on with Carlyle as a senior advisor beginning September 30. In that capacity he will advise the firm’s Asia, Europe, Japan and US buyout funds.
Prior to joining Carlyle, Gerstner was chairman and chief executive of IBM from 1993 to 2002. He is also the author of “Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?: Leading a Great Enterprise through Dramatic Change”, which chronicles the corporate turnaround of IBM under his leadership.

Carlyle has $82.7 billion (€56.3 billion) in assets committed to 60 funds for investment in buyouts, growth capital, real estate and leveraged finance across six continents. 

Earlier this month, Carlyle bought two residential towers in Macau in a deal  reportedly worth about $250 million (€161 million). The properties are two of five 35-storey towers in the “Lot KL” project. Carlyle's head of Asia property, Jason Lee, said in a statement that the firm would enlist an international interior designer to refine and enhance the layout and finishes of the residential units, as well as the clubhouse and other common facilities.

In June, Carlyle closed its third European real estate fund, Carlyle Europe Real Estate Partners III, on €2.2 billion. The fund will closely resemble Carlyle’s previous European property fund, CEREP II, in targeting six core markets: Iberia, France, Germany, Italy, Scandinavia and the UK. However this fund will broaden its remit to Eastern Europe. Robert Hodges, Carlyle’s head of UK real estate and European asset management, said the fund is particularly interested in looking for deals in Bulgaria.