In the ninth episode of Season 10 of the Propcast, host Louisa Dickins is joined by Eric Duchon, Global Head of ESG for Blackstone Real Estate and John Fitzpatrick, Chief Technology Officer of Alternative Asset Management Technology at at Blackstone, the world’s largest alternative asset manager. John featured previously in Season 2 of The Propcast.
Eric and John share where Blackstone is on ESG and why they are seen as one of the leaders in this space. They talk about what Blackstone is focusing on as a business when it comes down to strategy, investment and innovation across their diverse and global portfolio.
In this episode you will hear how Blackstone ensures attractive returns for their investors whilst making a positive impact on the communities in which they invest.
Key Insights From This Episode:
About Our Guests:
Eric Duchon is Global Head of ESG for Blackstone Real Estate. As part of the Real Estate Asset Management team, he partners with the firm’s central ESG team and Portfolio Operations to initiate, manage, implement and report ESG initiatives across the global Real Estate portfolio.
Prior to joining Blackstone in November 2020, Mr. Duchon was at LaSalle Investment Management where he was a Managing Director and Global Head of Sustainability. Prior to LaSalle, Mr. Duchon spent over 9 years at Cushman & Wakefield as the Director of Sustainability Strategies.
Mr. Duchon received a BBA from Emory University – Goizueta Business School and a Masters in Real Estate Development Degree from New York University Schack Institute of Real Estate.
John Fitzpatrick is a Chief Technology Officer of Alternative Asset Management Technology at Blackstone. He handles all aspects of technology across Blackstone’s Real Estate and Private Equity businesses and assists our portfolio companies with managing their technology programs and strategy. He is also involved in the firm’s balance sheet investments in targeted, early stage, technology-related opportunities.
Prior to his current role, Mr. Fitzpatrick oversaw various initiatives across the entire Technology and Innovations group. Before joining Blackstone in 2011, Mr. Fitzpatrick worked at Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor’s, for seven years where he was most recently the Head of Product.
He received a BS in Finance from St. John’s University and currently serves on the Blackstone Charitable Foundation’s Leadership Council.
Blackstone is the world’s largest alternative asset manager. We seek to create positive economic impact and long-term value for our investors, the companies we invest in, and the communities in which we work. We do this by using extraordinary people and flexible capital to help companies solve problems. Our $941 billion in assets under management include investment vehicles focused on private equity, real estate, public debt and equity, infrastructure, life sciences, growth equity, opportunistic, non-investment grade credit, real assets and secondary funds, all on a global basis. Further information is available at www.blackstone.com. Follow @blackstone on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram.
About Our Host
Louisa is the co-founder of LMRE, which has rapidly become the market leading global PropTech recruitment platform and search consultancy with operations across North America, United Kingdom, Europe and Asia-Pacific.
To promote the industry she is so passionate about, Louisa set up the Global podcast ‘The Propcast’where she hosts and invites guests from the built environment space to join her in conversation about innovation.
LMRE is globally recognised for leading the way in Real Estate Tech & Innovation talent management.
From the outset our vision was to become a global provider of the very best strategic talent to the most innovative organisations in PropTech, ConTech, Smart Buildings, ESG, Sustainability and Strategic Consulting.
At LMRE we are fully committed at all times to exceed the expectations of our candidates and clients by providing the very best advice and by unlocking exclusive opportunities across our global network in the UK, Europe, North America and Asia-Pacific.
[2:06] Eric: What is your role at Blackstone?
[4:44] John: What are your responsibilities in your role at Blackstone and how have they changed?
[5:35] Eric: What does ESG mean to Blackstone and how has it changed since you joined in 2020?
[7:40] John: How does your team assist with the ESG part of Blackstone?
[9:05] John: Are there any more climate focused ESG investments across your portfolio that you could share with us?
[9:42] Eric: How do these investments assist with your portfolios?
[13:31] John: How do you tackle the technology gaps in businesses across your portfolio?
[17:11] Eric: What are the main barriers when it comes down to reducing carbon across your portfolios?
[20:45] John: Is there anything you would like to mention that you have seen in terms of barriers?
[23:00] Eric: What is the balance between automation and optimisation, and reducing carbon footprint?
L – Touch on the main lessons you have learnt throughout your career within this space?
Eric: You need to stay nimble in everything that you do, different things come at you everyday and you need to be able to take them in your stride.
M – Please give a mention to anyone / product / service.
John: Jonathan Gray, President at Blackstone, he is committed to ESG and doing it the right way.
R – What has been the most rewarding aspect of working in ESG?
Eric: Whether you’re reducing carbon emissions, whether you’re ensuring that folks from under-resourced communities are getting better opportunities working with our portfolio companies. That to me is what drove me into the space connecting the passion to drive change.
E – What are you excited about in the future of the ESG space?
John: The innovation that is coming down the pipe, some of the best and brightest minds are in this space that are really passionate about this topic so the landscape in a few years time is going to look vastly different.
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