Carlyle would be so cool if it were better and I wish it was

On paper, Carlyle should be so sick. Kind of an Avengers-like origin story with law plus finance, named after the literal hotel where its origin-story meetings happened, which is cinematic. It's one of the pioneers in the industry wtihout being stuffy to a KKR degree because of it. Rubenstein is a hell of an interview, supports like every major charity in America, and owns a bazillion cool historical pieces of Americana in a way that seems classier / less new-money than Steve Cohen. Good palate cleanser personality-wise to the more fuck-you style of Schwarzman (who I also love). He and the firm, of course, have had literal Illuminati whispers about them, and financial firms having somewhat nonpublic governmental ties is cool in a Masters of the Universe kind of way. DC is in many respects a much cooler and more chill place to live than NYC, especially beyond the first couple of years, and even if the work itself is kind of intense.

Against all that potential is such a blah reality. Carlyle was the first to have a million different funds alongside buyout, but none appear to be sexy in a Blackstone "we just decided to do real estate one day and were the best and biggest at it in 15 years" way. Instead, the other funds are all like hey, want to invest in lower-middle-market upstream sustainable assets in a fund dedicated to that class specifically in the Philippines and Belgium only? Do we have the dedicated vehicle for you! Enjoy bidding against The Jordan Company!!

The firm should have great culture due to its DC roots, but you don't even know what city you'll be in because they're so group-siloed! What's more, culture itself is incredibly group-dependent and ranging from weirdo to hardo to normal, and though you'd think the firm would be among the leaders in the whole One Firm thing, even if you're in the same city as other groups, you might not talk to anyone outside of your own at all.

There's not even a real preftige / instrumental aspect to working at Carlyle that would match up to what should be, on paper, a real top-tier MF outlook. Returns are blah like all the time but not like disastrous enough to be funny like the Providences of old (or how some of the tech guys are going to be looked at once they mark accurately in the current vintage). Leadership doesn't even make sense and seems unplanned, and none of the players in these power-struggle wars even own cool sports teams like with CD&R or Apollo. They're pulling beta moves like announcing their fundraising is going to be weak-streamed and limp for the next decade instead of beating targets like the top funds are still doing, even if on an extended timeline.

It's very selective but not incredibly selective such that the banking guys and gals are thirsting over it like BX/KKR(/Apollo/SLP for the less socially adept crowd), partly due to the group structure. And it's not even a golden ticket to the best b-schools anymore, with Berkshire and New Mountain and the like being more of a lock for HBS. If I wanted to only guarantee Wharton and be a hike away from New York, I'd go work at Kohlberg or something idk.

Idrk what inspired this rant really. I'm years beyond my time in PE and have time to kill I guess.

 

It has fallen off in many ways. Pay has been lacking for awhile is my understanding. Their energy franchise was/is a mess, if that’s any indication of the state of affairs at the firm, no bueno. It’s Iike a university that was once respected and then started too many online programs…

 

Absolute banter club. In shambles after their starboy (Youngkin), one of the only interesting players on the team, left for the chance to make his mark at AFC Richmond, with its deep-rooted history and whatnot. Academy hasn't been good enough and has flopped in the transfer market--markers of a typical relegation candidate I'm afraid

 

Reads like a 1st world prb .. but sounds interesting enough to write a Forbes story.. defenitely want to hear more

 

Everybody wants to talk shit about the funds they got rejected from... 

returns are indistinguishable from BX over the past 10 years and they send the highest % of associates to HBS / GBS as compared to any other PE firm. MF isn't for everyone, but for folks who want to go to bschool there's no better ticket

source: 

https://menlocoaching.com/mba-applications-and-admissions-guide

/private-equity-mba/

 

Everybody wants to talk shit about the funds they got rejected from... 

returns are indistinguishable from BX over the past 10 years and they send the highest % of associates to HBS / GBS as compared to any other PE firm. MF isn't for everyone, but for folks who want to go to bschool there's no better ticket

source: 

https://menlocoaching.com/mba-applications-and-admissions-guide

/private-equity-mba/

You’re on drugs.

Carlyle is definitely viewed as a MF that has lost its sheen. They have no redeeming quality other than what they used to be.

They need to figure out how they’re going to right the ship, they’ve been left in the dust by other MFs and even upper MM funds.

Let’s see if Gary Cohn can turn it around; it’s a very tall order.

 

As a firm, Carlyle has been underperforming massively compared to its peers, like high single digit P/DE compared to others at mid to high-teens. Good private equity platform but the public market values more than that, and unfortunately Carlyle has 1) fundraising headwinds, 2) heavy carry exposure, 3) mediocre credit business that focuses too much on lower-fee corporate credits and CLOs, 4) ok insurance exposure but FR is nowhere near Athene / GA, and 5) investment solutions that should be spin off. They have building blocks but really depends on where Harvey wants to drive, and an assessment of where each division is today / will be tomorrow is definitely under way.

 

Their PE platform has been bottom decile for at least 15 years now

 

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