Blackstone expansion

The Blackstone investment group has earmarked Australia as a growth engine and plans to expand its $1.5 billion portfolio.

The Blackstone investment group has earmarked Australia as a growth engine and plans to expand its $1.5 billion portfolio.

Chairman and chief executive Stephen Schwarzman told investors at the Morgan Stanley Financials Conference 2013 in New York there were two big countries - Australia and China - worth investing in.

Blackstone entered Australia about two years ago when it took over the Valad Property Group.

It was considered a springboard for Blackstone's growth in the country with plans now afoot to redevelop the Goldfields House site at Circular Quay into apartments. Blackstone has also bought the Top Ryde shopping centre for $341 million from receivers McGrathNicol.

The group is also thought to be looking at buying a $574 million-plus hotel portfolio from the Brookfield Group, as it focuses on the redevelopment of the office tower at Wynyard station.

It is said Blackstone is also the front-runner for two shopping centres in Melbourne, including the Greensborough shopping mall.

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