Below is The Blackstone Group L.P.’s (NYSE:BX) conference call transcript about “The Ten Surprises of 2015”, featuring Byron Wien, Vice Chairman of Blackstone Advisory Partners LP, held on Thursday, January 8, 2015 11:00 am ET.
The Blackstone Group L.P. (NYSE:BX) is one of the world’s leading investment and advisory firms with Total Assets Under Management of $284 billion as of September 30, 2014. Its global portfolio includes investment vehicles focused on a global private equity, real estate, public debt and equity, non-investment grade credit, real assets and secondary funds.
Now on its 30th year, Byron Wien announces his list of this year’s Ten Surprises which includes US Federal Reserve “acting sooner than later” with interest rates hike by the first quarter, a cyber-terrorist attack on a “major money center” may take place to try to hamper the US economy, as well as Russian President Putin will resign before the end of the year. In the company’s press release, Wien’s “surprise” is defined as “as an event which the average investor would only assign a one out of three chance of taking place but which Byron believes is ‘probable’ having a better than 50% likelihood of happening.” Wien is a Wall Street veteran and recipient of the prestigious New York Society of Security Analysts (NYSSA) Lifetime Achievement Award. He is currently the Vice Chairman of the financial advisory group Blackstone Advisory Partners LP and acts as senior adviser to The Blackstone Group L.P. (NYSE:BX).
Joan Solotar, Senior Managing Director of External Relations and Strategy of Blackstone.
Good morning everyone. Thanks for joining us today. This is Joan Solotar, Senior Managing Director of External Relations and Strategy of Blackstone. So today, we’ll have the Blackstone Webcast: The Ten Surprises of 2015, featuring Byron Wien, Vice Chairman, Blackstone Advisory Partners. Following Byron’s formal comments will be an opportunity for you to ask questions.
If you look at the lower left hand corner of your screen you will see a Q&A box, feel free to click on that at any point to submit your questions anytime during the webcast. At the bottom of the console, you’ll see a series of widgets. This interactive feature will allow you to access additional functions by scrolling over them such as Twitter, Wikipedia, Download Slides and Refer A Friend. We plan to keep the webcast to 60 minutes, that’s including Q&A, and at the end of the PowerPoint, you’ll see a full list of disclosures. So if you’re wondering why you don’t see Byron on screen, he apparently challenged Andre Agassi to a tennis match and won the match but broke his hips so we have Byron dialed-in through audio. And with that, I am going to turn it over to Byron Wien.
Byron Wien, Vice Chairman, Blackstone Advisory Partners.
Thanks Joan. It wasn’t Andre Agassi, and that wasn’t even that hard a shot that I fell on, but here I am laid up. I hope it’s only going to be for a couple more weeks and the recovery seems to be going very well. Let me just talk about a few general themes for the Ten Surprises. First thing is, this is the 30th Year of the Ten Surprises. I started doing these in 1986 and the idea of it was that the Ten Surprises are all things that I think are probable but the average investor would give them no better than a one in three chance in taking place.