Last week, I had the opportunity to once again interview David Rubenstein at an event in Washington, DC. Most of you know him as the co-founder of The Carlyle Group, one of the most successful private equity firms in the world, as well as a billionaire and a philanthropist.
Since our last discussion in 2011, The Carlyle Group has gone from a privately owned firm to a publically traded company, David has become the largest donor in the restoration effort of the Washington Monument, and his company is investing in parts of the world most people have never heard of. So here’s a quick peek at a few of the fascinating things that David had to say.
Number 1: Sub-Sahara Africa and Other Emerging Opportunities
According to David, sub-Sahara Africa is THE up and coming emerging market. With seven out of the ten fastest growing countries (GDP growth) in the world located there, a young population, enormous minerals extraction opportunities and a growing consumer market, you also have enormous potential opportunity.
Number 2: Private Equity Investing: Now and the Future
As for investing in private equity now, David says it’s a wonderful time to sell since company valuations are so high, but a tougher time to invest for the same reason. Looking to next year, he sees more potential opportunity as he believes that the market is due for a “breather” (read lower prices).
Number 3: About the Fed and Future Taper Tantrums
It’s hard to imagine that just five years ago, the Fed’s balance sheet, which no one really knew or cared about, was just $850 billion. Today it’s somewhere around $4 trillion. We’re in uncharted waters and no one really knows what will happen when the Fed pulls back its bond buying program – even the Fed.