Allen Stanford Receiver Wants To Hire PE Firm

HOUSTON (Reuters) – The receiver charged with marshaling assets of accused swindler Allen Stanford said in court papers on Thursday he needs the help of a private equity adviser to manage the estate’s web of investments which total about $650 million.

Stanford receiver Ralph Janvey would like to hire Park Hill Group LLC, a unit of the Blackstone Group LP (BX.N), a lawyer for Janvey said in a filing in federal court in Dallas.

“The engagement of Park Hill Group will provide the receiver with the necessary financial expertise to properly manage these assets, assess their value and identify potential buyers, thereby maximizing the value to the receivership estate,” the filing said.

So far, the receiver has identified debt and equity investments with initial investment amounts totaling about $650 million. Those investments were made in portfolio companies, private equity and real estate funds, the filing said.

Park Hill Group has agreed to accept an initial $375,000 retainer fee, according the motion.

In February, U.S. District Judge David Godbey named Janvey to oversee the Stanford’s operations. Since then, Janvey has shuttered Stanford offices, frozen accounts and seized the Texas financier’s jets, yacht and homes. He is in the process of divesting those assets.

For example, Janvey asked the court this week to throw Stanford’s daughter out of a $1 million Houston condominium owned by a Stanford company so it could be sold.

Stanford, 59, is accused by U.S. prosecutors of leading a $7 billion Ponzi scheme involving certificates of deposit issued by his bank in Antigua. He has denied any wrongdoing. (Reporting by Anna Driver in Houston, editing by Matt Daily)