Blackstone’s Latest Hired Help? No, Just Two Well-Dressed Visitors
It appears that a couple of visitors to the Blackstone Group elevated the private equity firm’s dress code for an afternoon.
Late on Thursday, the private equity firm’s Twitter account posted the following message with little fanfare:
Just another Thursday at Blackstone… http://t.co/uDoPq1Jx
— The Blackstone Group (@blackstone) 17 Jan 13
Yep, that’s a pair of Magellanic penguins, calmly milling around the reception area for Blackstone’s offices in Midtown Manhattan. No, Mr. Popper wasn’t in town.
Some might assume that the little tuxedoed birds were the newest members of Blackstone’s help staff. But as it turns out, they were just visiting for a little while.
The visit was arranged courtesy of staffers from SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, a Blackstone portfolio company currently in the process of going public, on hand for a presentation at The New York Times Travel Show this week, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter.
Trainers for the two, part of an Antarctic exhibit, took advantage of some downtime to bring the birds over to SeaWorld’s corporate parent. Blackstone staffers trailed the penguins around, taking a series of pictures that are scheduled to be posted to Twitter on Friday.
The two didn’t have a chance to shake appendages with Blackstone chief Stephen A. Schwarzman, who was tied up in a meeting, this person said. But despite Magellanic penguins’ reputation for being among the most skittish members of their genus, the birds strode waddled around the firm’s offices with relative confidence, this person said.
Unfortunately, the pair left some unsolicited presents on a carpet and a conference table — both easily cleaned up.