US asset management group Blackstone has named Jon Gray as its new president.
Gray is currently global head of real estate at the New York-headquartered company. He has led the arm since 2005, with real estate contributing more than half the firm's earnings in the last several years.
Current president and chief operating officer Tony James is to hand over the reins to his successor and will move to a new role in the firm. He will now become executive vice chairman.
“I have had a wonderful 15 years at Blackstone so far and still savor every minute of it," said James. "One of my most important responsibilities is succession, and I am blessed to have a spectacular leader and investor like Jon Gray to whom I can hand the reins.”
Shares in the company were down slightly today at the news that James would step back from the role of president.
Blackstone's co-founder and CEO Stephen A. Schwarzman said that James has "had a bigger impact on Blackstone than anyone in the firm’s history".
He added: "He is indefatigable, and a superb leader with unimpeachable integrity. I could not be more pleased that Tony wants to stay fully engaged at Blackstone."