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RCA: Blackstone tops 2014 buyers and sellers list

 With $16.85 billion of acquisitions and $11.42 billion of sales in the year, Blackstone dominated yet another list of real estate investment houses, this time compiled by research firm, Real Capital Analytics. 

New York-based private equity real estate firm, The Blackstone Group, has once again topped real estate charts, this time for both buying and selling properties.

The number one ranked PERE 50 firm simultaneously topped a list of buyers of real estate in the world in 2014 after acquiring $16.85 billion of property in the year and a list of sellers of real estate after selling $11.42 billion. The lists were compiled by Real Capital Analytics (RCA), the real estate investment research firm.

The Americas was the firm’s most active region in the year. In the Americas, RCA recorded $7.7 billion of Blackstone acquisitions, the third most in the region behind American Realty Capital Properties, the US REIT and investment bank JPMorgan, which bought $9.65 billion and $7.81 billion respectively. It said Blackstone sold $7.80 billion of real estate too, the second most behind another trust, Cole REIT which sold $8.6 billion.

In Europe, the firm acquired $7.11 billion of real estate, almost $400 million more than the second most active investment force in the region in 2014, the Qatar Investment Authority, which bought $6.69 billion. It was the fifth biggest seller in the region, disposing of $3.36 billion. Deutsche Bank was the biggest seller in Europe, offloading $6.77 billion.

Blackstone was relatively less active in Asia and did not figure in either RCA’s top 20 buyers or sellers of real estate in the region in the year. Indeed, in Asia, there was little involvement by private equity real estate firms in either lists. PAG, Fortress and Lone Star, each with significant Japanese strategies, figured on the seller lists, in eighth, eleventh and eighteenth place respectively.

Cumulatively, however, Blackstone’s investing activities in the year has seen it prevail as the most active real estate investment firm on the planet. It comes as it dominates the capital raising markets for private real estate investments too. In PERE’s annual ranking of private equity real estate firms by capital raised in the last five years Blackstone prevailed by a large margin with more than $32 billion of equity raised. Second in the ranking was Dallas-based Lone Star with $12.5 billion raised.

PERE revealed at the end of last month how Blackstone was expected to raise as much as $10 billion for its eighth Blackstone Real Estate Partners global opportunity fund in just one capital closing anticipated to happen in March, meaning it all but definitely will retain that position when the ranking is compiled again and published in May.