New York; October 30, 2001: The Blackstone Group today announced that Blackstone Alternative Asset Management (BAAM) has established a physical presence in Europe with the hiring of Nicola Marie Meaden as Managing Director and Valerie Benard as Director. Ms. Meaden and Ms. Benard will serve BAAM’s European institutional investor clientele and assist in BAAM’s efforts to identify alternative investment managers.
They will join Blackstone’s European operations in London, The Blackstone Group International Ltd., which also includes professionals from Blackstone’s real estate and private equity groups. Previously, BAAM’s European relationships were managed directly from the New York office.
BAAM invests $2.4 billion of investor and the firm’s capital in select hedge fund managers through several multi-manager programs, in addition to serving as strategic advisor for CalPERS’ $1.0 billion hedge fund program.
“The combined experience and prominence of Nicola and Valerie in the European hedge fund community are unparalleled, and we are excited that they have decided to join us,” said J. Tomilson Hill, President and CEO of BAAM.
“Institutional investors in Europe have expressed a strong demand for our multi-manager programs, and we look forward to serving them with a world class team in Europe,” Mr. Hill continued. “This is a major milestone for us, and represents a further solidification of our leadership among marketable alternatives multi-manager programs serving institutional investors worldwide.”
As Chairman and CEO of Tremont TASS (Europe) Limited, Ms. Meaden directed all non-U.S. activities of Tremont Advisers, Inc., particularly in Europe and Japan. Her responsibilities included managing and expanding Tremont’s investment advisory services, launching offshore proprietary products, building the client service team, identifying and researching marketable alternatives managers, and managing TASS Research. Ms. Meaden founded TASS Investment Research Ltd. in 1990 and served as Chairman. After Tremont Advisers acquired TASS in 1999 and created Tremont TASS (Europe), Ms. Meaden continued as Chairman of the new entity. A prominent hedge fund industry commentator, Ms. Meaden has written two books on investment management. She holds a BA in History and Politics from the University of Exeter.
Ms. Benard was previously the Business Development Director of Tremont TASS (Europe), managing the sales and marketing of investment advisory services, hedge funds of funds, and hedge fund and CTA databases. She joined TASS Investment Research in 1994 and became a partner in 1998. Ms. Benard holds a Masters in finance and business management from the Faculté des Affaires Internationales. Ms. Bernard is fluent in French, English and Spanish.
Note to editors:
The Blackstone Group, a private investment bank with offices in New York and London, was founded in 1985. BAAM, the firm’s marketable alternatives multi-manager investment management business, was formed in 1990 and currently has $3.4 billion in discretionary and non-discretionary marketable alternative assets. The Blackstone Group’s other five core businesses are Mergers and Acquisitions Advisory, Restructuring and Reorganization Advisory, Private Equity Investing, Private Real Estate Investing, and Private Mezzanine Investing. The Blackstone Group has raised over $15 billion across its alternative asset management businesses.