Blackstone Group Inc, the world's largest manager of alternative assets such as private equity and real estate, is seeking to raise $4 billion for a fund to invest in various asset classes, according to people familiar with the matter. It is the fourth such fund to be raised by the New York-based firm. Dubbed Blackstone Tactical Opportunities Fund IV, it will have a mandate to invest in assets that typically fall outside the scope of Blackstone's other funds, from timber and mines to oil tankers and satellites. It can also invest in companies, either through their equity or their debt. Blackstone has marketed its predecessor funds in this category as offering "well-protected downside and low correlation to public markets". The fund could finalize its first commitments from investors by June, the sources said, requesting anonymity because the matter is confidential. A Blackstone spokesman declined to comment. Blackstone's previous Tactical Opportunities investments include dating app Bumble Inc, cybersecurity firm FireEye Inc, life sciences firm Cryoport Inc, and telecoms infrastructure company Phoenix Tower International. Blackstone raised $4.09 billion for Tactical Opportunities Fund III in 2019. Its Tactical Opportunities Fund II and inaugural Tactical Opportunities Fund, which raised $6.7 billion and $5.6 billion respectively, had both returned 1.3 times of its investors' money as of June 2020, according to the California Public Employees' Retirement System. Blackstone's Tactical Opportunities funds have $30 billion in assets under management across 142 investments, according to its website. The unit is run by David Blitzer, a Blackstone senior managing director and an investor in sports teams such as New Jersey Devils of the U.S. hockey league, the National Basketball Association's Philadelphia 76ers, and English soccer club Crystal Palace. REUTERS
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