A day in the life of a Blackstone real estate agent
Day in the life: Serena, Real Estate Management Associate at Blackstone, London
Serena graduated from Cambridge University with a degree in Agriculture. After completing an internship in UBS’s investment banking division during her penultimate year, she joined Blackstone’s London office in 2018 as an off-cycle intern. She became a full-time analyst in 2019 and was promoted to associate in 2021.
7:30 am: My alarm goes off and I start my morning routine. I will check overnight to see what emails have come in and if there is anything I need to respond to urgently. I usually walk to work with a backpack full of clothes and shower in the office.
9:15 am: I’m at my desk, checking email and seeing what’s planned for the day ahead. I respond to late night arrivals and check all relevant real estate news. In general, that means reading the FT and React News. We often get requests from the acquisitions team to help provide property data for the investment committee materials, so I’ll be speaking to the acquisitions team’s analyst. I’m on the asset management team which oversees the properties post-acquisition by the acquisitions team and is also responsible for the disposal (sale) of assets.
10:00 am I have a weekly meeting with our local operating company in the Netherlands. We cover different topics but start with the development of an office building. We are in the ‘approval’ phase for an asset and in this case awaiting local government approval, having received internal approval for the model and development plan a few weeks ago. We are also discussing the rental schedule for a unit that will become available soon. We cover which agents we should use to market the property and what the appropriate rental rates and incentives might be, particularly in the current macro environment. We also discuss how this might affect the returns we project on our investment. We will visit Amsterdam next week to see how developments are progressing and meet with the local solicitors and banks to also discuss the itinerary. Apart from offices in the Netherlands, I cover logistics facilities in the UK
11:00 am My other deal team has an internal meeting where we discuss our results for the coming week. This includes working with the company on materials for an upcoming board meeting, which they will present to senior staff in the London offices (the New York team often join via Zoom and the meeting is sometimes conducted remotely when the company is based further afield). is).
12:00 PM: I take 30 minutes to respond to all emails that come in, send out some quick replies, and flag anything that requires a more thorough response for later.
12:30pm: I usually go out and get something to eat at a nearby cafe. Depending on the weather, I eat outside in Berkeley Square or in the office kitchen. If it’s a busy day, I eat at my desk.
1:00 p.m.: Twice a quarter we have a division-wide evaluation meeting. We present our deals to senior team members in New York and engage in a question-and-answer discussion on proposed valuations of the assets we manage. This often affects the macro and market environment.
3:30pm: I’ll take a coffee break and maybe meet with my mentor to discuss how my work is going and longer term career plans or any questions I may have.
4:00 p.m.: I have a meeting with all parties with the external lawyers and banks for a live deal. My work involves a lot of interaction with other companies and I am often on the phone or in communication with high-level industry players.
5:00 pm: The meetings end and I will return to my main analytical work. I would say it’s 80% in Excel and 20% in PowerPoint. During this time I will be working on models, but I can also check emails or sometimes call the teams responsible for managing the properties to verify certain information.
6:00 p.m.: The office orders food from a number of restaurants in London. Most juniors eat and chat with colleagues in the office, it’s quite a social event.
9:00 p.m.: I usually finish work and catch a company-paid cab home. How busy I am depends on deal flow and when work ramps up in reporting periods.
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