Carlyle poaches Partners Group secondaries specialists

Sarah Schwarzchild and David Lei will head up real estate secondaries for Carlyle-owned Metropolitan Real Estate Equity Management.

Carlyle Group has hired Sarah Schwarzchild and David Lei from Partners Group to focus on its real estate secondaries at Metropolitan Real Estate Equity Management, the real estate fund of funds Carlyle bought in 2013.

Schwarzschild and Lei have been appointed vice president and associate respectively and will work from Metropolitan’s New York office,

Schwarzchild previously headed up a small team at Partners Group in the US that was charged with sourcing, evaluation and execution of real estate secondaries transactions. Her career began as an analyst at Rothschild. Schwarzchild will also serve on Metropolitan’s investment committee.

Before his role at Partners Group, Lei worked in real assets at Credit Suisse’s private equity fund of funds unit, Customized Fund Investment Group.

Both were hired to “expand our strategic initiative in the secondary segment of the real estate private equity universe and to capitalize on currently attractive market conditions,” said David M. Sherman, president and co-chief investment officer at Metropolitan.

Real estate secondaries accounted for 2 percent of $26 billion in secondaries deal volume last year.

At the time of Carlyle’s takeover in September 2013, the firm said Metropolitan had a $2.6 billion portfolio and investments in 180 real estate funds worldwide. Carlyle said the deal was done as part of its strategy to expand and diversify its fund of funds unit; and was its first move into a real estate fund of funds.