Blackstone Earnings Rise as Growth Strategy Boosts Portfolio

Blackstone Earnings Rise as Growth Strategy Boosts Portfolio
Photo: Jose A. Alvarado Jr. for The Wall Street Journal

Blackstone Group Inc.’s earnings jumped in the second quarter, propelled by record appreciation in the value of its investments.

The private-equity firm posted second-quarter net income of $1.31 billion, or $1.82 a share, it said Thursday. That compares with a profit of $568.3 million, or 81 cents a share, a year earlier.

The value of Blackstone’s private-equity portfolio climbed by 13.8% in the latest period, exceeding the roughly 8% gain for the S&P 500. Combined fund appreciation across its various business lines was the highest in the history of the firm.

Aiding the strong performance was Blackstone’s recent emphasis on putting money into fast-growing companies. Initial public offerings of outsourcing company TaskUs Inc. and Indian electric-vehicle components manufacturer Sona BLW Precision Forgings Ltd. pushed up the firm’s private-equity portfolio, while sales of last-mile logistics properties in the U.S. and Australia helped boost its real-estate holdings.

Blackstone President Jonathan Gray has encouraged the firm’s business heads to think more thematically about investing, identifying global trends and finding ways to put money to work in areas that would benefit from them. Among these are logistics, software, digital payments and life sciences, areas of the economy that are experiencing outsize growth.