Buffett Puts in a Word for Blackstone's Peterson
Warren Buffett sees more philanthropy in the world's future and he's strongly hinting that one of Blackstone's prime beneficiaries is part of the trend. In an interview with Bloomberg Business News television centered on his charitable lunch auction, Buffett said today, "Americans are becoming more philanthropically aware. I think it's a growing trend. I hope it is."
And in what appears to be a reference to Blackstone co-founder Pete Peterson, Buffett told Bloomberg, "I know of one fellow that's just been involved in a public offering. I think he's going to be setting up a billion-dollar foundation." That's not really a surprise (although it is admirable). Peterson's made no secret of his plans. The Blackstone prospectus filed with the SEC in June said he plans to "donate to various charities a substantial amount" of his IPO proceeds.
Still, Peterson can use the PR assist. The Blackstone IPO and the billions its generating have sparked calls in Congress to increase taxes (eliminate tax breaks, if you prefer) on private equity's big winners.
By the way, you can see Peterson's surprise appearance on CNBC Power Lunch today in which he expresses deep gratitude to Blackstone's first investor or read the transcript here.
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