The private equity fund of asset manager BlackRock Inc. took a substantial stake in Authentic Brands Group LLC, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
The deal is the first investment for BlackRock's Long-Term Private Capital fund, which amassed $2.75 billion in its first fundraising round earlier this year and is aiming to raise up to $12 billion total.
According to a Reuters report, the stake will total up to $875 million, with the fund itself putting in $625 million. The remaining $250 million will come from co-investors and related entities, André Bourbonnais, the head of Long-Term Private Capital, reportedly told Reuters.
The investment values Authentic Brands at more than $4 billion, including debt, and will make the BlackRock fund the company's largest shareholder, according to the Journal's report. Private equity firm Leonard Green & Partners LP, currently Authentic Brands' largest shareholder, and other investors reportedly will reduce their stakes in order to make room for the BlackRock investment.
Authentic Brands owns and licenses a portfolio of 50 entertainment and lifestyle brands, including Sports Illustrated, Nine West and Aéropostale, according to the Journal.
BlackRock confirmed the deal in an Aug. 11 news release. The BlackRock fund joins General Atlantic Service Company LP, Lion Capital LLP, Simon Property Group Inc., Brookfield Properties' retail group and Shaquille O'Neal as investors in Authentic Brands.