Abington grad, billionaire businessman Stephen A. Schwarzman interviewed by Forbes, now 34th richest person in the world

Stephen A. Schwarzman, a 1965 graduate of Abington Senior High School and a billionaire businessman, was interviewed by Forbes for a Saturday, March 13 article titled “Investing Wisdom And Life Lessons From Blackstone Billionaire Steve Schwarzman”.

Schwarzman, now 77, derived his from the Blackstone Group, a private equity firm that had $1 trillion in assets as of September 2023, according to Bloomberg. The article notes his early drive to succeed:

From as early as ten-years-old, he would work at his father’s curtains and linens store by helping work the counter. By age 14, he ran his own lawn mowing business where he focused on new clients while his younger twin brothers would mow. 

He went on to graduate from Yale and Harvard Business School, and briefly served in the U.S. Army Reserve. He has also briefly chaired President Donald Trump’s Strategic and Policy Forum and served as a consultant for the Obama administration, through which a new tax plan added $1 trillion of additional revenue by raising taxes, closing tax loopholes, and ending deductions. 

Today, his net worth is estimated to be $38 billion, Forbes said. He is currently the 34th richest person in the world.

An excerpt from the interview:

Forbes: How did you get your start in the investing business?

Schwarzman: I got my start in private equity investing, representing some of the firms that were just starting in the business. There were probably only eight to ten firms in private equity at the time. I was running the M&A group at Lehman Brothers advising on private equity deals, where I spent 13 years in total and eventually became managing director. The people in this small, nascent private equity world [ed note: then known as leveraged buyouts] , were sort of age peers of mine, so I knew them socially. People were reluctant to represent them because the deals they were doing were very small and the whole concept was new. So it was a natural thing for me to do because I knew the people. And so I got to see the way deals were put together because I was advising on them—that was my start. And then in 1982, I wanted to get Lehman Brothers into that business because I thought we could raise much more money as one of the largest investment firms in the world. The executive committee of Lehman turned down going into the private equity business, which I think was an expensive decision on their part.

For the full story, you can click here. You can also read Glenside Local’s previous coverage of Schwarzman’s $25 million donation to his alma mater in 2018.

To purchase of copy of Schwarzman’s 2019 book, “What It Takes”, you can click here. For a 2023 interview with CNBC, you can watch below:

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Photo: Blackstone