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Last week the story broke that Blackstone is contemplating an IPO. This is on the heels of a number of public-to-private real estate transactions orchestrated by the firm, and topped off by the recent Equity Office deal. In another article, the Wall Street Journal highlighted that Blackstone chief Stephen Schwarzman often pointed out the failings of public-market ownership of companies they hoped to acquire, and criticized Sarbanes-Oxley as having “taken the entrepreneurial zeal out of a lot of corporate managers”. Well, I guess that Blackstone does, after all, see a silver lining in the public arena. It seems to me that, despite the rhetoric, it’s only a matter of time for the pendulum to swing back to a new round of REIT IPO’s, and reinforce the significant need for talent capable of responding to the demands of the public markets.

Tony LoPinto is CEO of Equinox Partners, an executive search firm specializing in the real estate industry, and parent company of SelectLeaders. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own.

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