Blackstone to cut 70 jobs

The New York-based mega-buyout shop will cut back on 5% of its roughly 1,400-member workforce. The news comes after the publicly listed firm reported steep losses in the third quarter.

The Blackstone Group is cutting 70 jobs, or 5 percent of its 1,400-member workforce, across all business lines.

Blackstone, the world’s largest private equity firm, is cutting the positions after reporting steep losses last quarter. The publicly listed firm reported a third quarter loss of $509 million, including a $68.3 million loss to the firm’s private equity portfolio. That’s compared to profits of $227.3 million in the portfolio in the same period last year.

The firm said it would have to write down a third of its private corporate investments within its private equity portfolio.

Blackstone declined to comment about the job cuts.

The Steve Schwarzman-led firm is the most recent in a growing list of private equity firms that have cut back on staff amid the turmoil roiling the financial world. The Carlyle Group, 3i, Investcorp and American Capital all announced job cuts this month, most targeting back office-type positions. 

3i cut back about 15 percent of its 600-employee staff, mostly focused on back office jobs like marketing and human resources. Carlyle terminated 100 workers out of its 1,000-member workforce, primarily in the US and also targeting back office positions, though some deal workers were included in the cuts. Carlyle also said it was closing its Menlo Park, California office, which had been open for less than a year.

Bahrain-based Investcorp said it was cutting 20 percent of its staff to cut costs, affecting its offices in Bahrain, London and New York. The cuts will cut across various business lines including private equity, real estate, hedge funds and technology.

American Capital, and affiliate European Capital, said it will eliminate 110 jobs and close two offices, representing a 19 percent reduction in the listed firm’s US and European workforces. The firm did not give details about what jobs would be cut or what offices would be closed.