Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust Inc., a publicly registered non-traded REIT sponsored by private equity giant The Blackstone Group (NYSE: BX), announced that, effective Aug. 14, 2023, Robert Harper, who previously served as the company’s head of asset management as well as head of Blackstone Real Estate Asset Management Americas, was appointed as the new president of BREIT. Harper was also appointed to serve as a member of the board of directors.
Harper replaces A.J. Agarwal, whom the company said has taken a nine-month continuing education sabbatical beginning September 15, 2023. Additionally, Agarwal stepped down from his role as a member of the board of directors but will serve as board observer throughout his sabbatical.
“Blackstone has a deep bench of talent, and we are fortunate to have Rob, who has been invaluable to BREIT and instrumental to its success since inception,” Frank Cohen, chairman and chief executive officer of BREIT, said. “BREIT and its stockholders will benefit from Rob’s 20 years of Blackstone real estate experience and deep BREIT expertise. We look forward to A.J.’s return but we know he will enjoy his academic year at Stanford after 31 years at Blackstone.”
Harper joined Blackstone Inc. in 2002 and the company says he has served in a number of different roles. Since 2016, Harper had been head of Real Estate Asset Management Americas, and prior to that, served as head of Europe for the Blackstone Real Estate Debt Strategies business.
In addition to his new roles with BREIT, Harper is a senior managing director in the Real Estate Group of Blackstone.
As The DI Wire previously reported, BREIT recently reported their company’s results during the second quarter of 2023.
Since proration began in November 2022, the company has paid out $8.1 billion to redeeming shareholders and “a shareholder who began submitting repurchase requests when proration began has received over 90% of their money back.”