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Blackstone Buys Wealth Manager Lombard in Blitzer’s Biggest Deal

Blackstone Group LP agreed to buy the European wealth-management business of Friends Life Group Ltd. for as much as 356 million pounds ($609 million), the largest investment of its type for a 2-year-old unit run by David Blitzer.

Blackstone, based in New York, will pay 254 million pounds upfront with a deferred payment in the form of a loan note for the Lombard business, according to a statement today from Friends Life. The insurer said it plans to return 261 million pounds to shareholders through a share buyback.