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Blackstone Hires Former Client Huang From AIG for Advisory Unit

   April 28 (Bloomberg) -- Blackstone Group LP, the world’s biggest private-equity firm, hired Felix Huang, a former executive at client American International Group Inc., for its corporate-advisory unit as it expands beyond buyouts.

Huang, a former restructuring executive at AIG, joined this month as a managing director based in the firm’s Menlo Park, California, office, said Christine Anderson, a Blackstone spokeswoman. New York-based Blackstone has been helping AIG restructure its business and sell units since 2008, when the U.S. government bailed out the insurance company to stave off a collapse.

Blackstone Chairman Stephen Schwarzman has expanded the 25-year-old firm’s non-LBO divisions to try to increase revenue and profits amid a diminished market for leveraged buyouts. The firm’s advisory business, led by John Studzinski, has worked on assignments for Procter & Gamble Co. and Nestle SA.

Huang was part of a group that oversaw the sale of assets at New York-based AIG to help pay back parts of the $182.3 billion government rescue. Until September 2009, the division was led by Paula Reynolds, who had been his boss in a previous job as vice president of corporate development at Safeco Corp.

Prior to joining Safeco, the Seattle-based auto insurer, in 2007, Huang worked at Paul Allen’s investment firm Vulcan Capital and co-founded wireless financial-services company M2Card Inc.

Blackstone gained 76 percent in the past year as financial markets stabilized and deal-making started to resume. The stock dropped 48 cents, or 3.2 percent, to $14.51 yesterday in New York Stock Exchange composite trading.

To contact the reporters on this story: Zachary R. Mider in New York at zmider1@bloomberg.net; Jason Kelly in Beverly Hills, California, at jkelly14@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christian Baumgaertel at cbaumgaertel@bloomberg.net

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