Blackstone Group LP, the world’s largest private-equity firm, named Claudio Boada, a former head of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.’s Spanish and Portuguese businesses, as a senior adviser to boost investments in euro crisis-stricken Spain and Portugal.
Boada, based in Madrid, is joining the private-equity and real estate team and will help originate transactions in the Iberian region, the New York-based firm said in a statement today. Boada is also chairman of cement maker Holcim Espana SA and sits on the European advisory board of HSBC Holdings Plc.
“We see substantial long-term opportunities in Spain to invest and create value for our limited partners, as demonstrated last year by Blackstone’s investment in Mivisa, the metal packaging manufacturer,” Joseph Baratta, head of Blackstone’s European private-equity operations, said in the statement.
Buyout firms are seeing investment opportunities in Spain just as the country became the euro region’s fourth nation to seek European Union assistance since the start of the debt crisis with a request of as much as 100 billion euros ($125 billion) to recapitalize its banks. They are looking to buy assets at a discount from Spanish lenders willing to sell real estate loans and property to boost regulatory capital.
“Given Spain’s need to recapitalize its banking sector, we believe that Claudio will be instrumental in establishing joint ventures and transactions between Blackstone and Spanish banks to bring in much needed expertise and capital into the country,” Chad Pike, co-head of European real estate at Blackstone, said in the statement.