Blackstone Group gets energized

October 31, 2011, 7:50 PM UTC

While I was on vacation last week, a bunch of media outlets reported that The Blackstone Group (BX) is raising up to $3 billion for a new fund dedicated to energy investments. Seems that Blackstone president Tony James mentioned it during the firm’s Q3 earnings call.

Pretty sure this is the same fund that Term Sheet first reported on back in April. The one that will co-invest equally on energy deals with Blackstone’s general private equity fund. Let me check… Yup, it is.

James mentioned it during the earnings call because the fund recently held a first close and has begun making investments (i.e., he was legally obligated to do so).

If Blackstone hits its target, this would be the firm’s second successful fundraising for a sector-specific vehicle. The first was a $2 billion media and communications fund raised in 2000, while subsequent failures have included an infrastructure fund and a cleantech fund (which fell well short of target, and was later shut down). There also were rumors in early 2008 that Blackstone might launch a fund dedicated to the financial services sector, but nothing came of it.

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