Blackstone taps energy director to lead GSO

The hire comes as the firm is raising capital for its $6.5bn distressed fund.

GSO Capital Partners has named Dwight Scott, the former head of its energy debt platform, as the firm’s president.

Rob Horn and Michael Zawadzki, managing directors at GSO, which is Blackstone’s credit arm, will replace Scott and become co-heads of the firm’s energy platform. Scott will still be involved in the firm’s energy credit business, according to a source familiar with the matter. Bloomberg first reported the news Scott’s promotion, which Blackstone confirmed to Private Debt Investor.

Scott previously worked in energy investment banking at Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette, where he met GSO founders Bennett Goodman and Tripp Smith as well as Blackstone president Tony James. He joined GSO in 2005 when the firm launched. GSO’s third founder is Doug Ostrover, who left the firm last year to launch Owl Rock Capital, a business development company.

The firm declined to comment.

Goodman and Smith will continue to oversee the business they created but will focus more on distressed debt investments, a shift that comes as the firm is currently raising its third closed-end fund for the strategy, GSO Capital Solutions Fund III, as Private Debt Investor reported. The vehicle is slated to have a $6.5 billion fundraising target, according to a media report, in order to invest in financially-troubled companies.

Blackstone began a process of shifting its distressed debt capital in its GSO Special Situations Fund, an open-ended hedge fund, to closed-end vehicles including Fund III, earlier this year. The SSF investors were given the opportunity to shift their capital committed to the hedge fund to Capital Solutions Fund III. The firm has begun a shift toward locked-up drawdown funds.

GSO has $93 billion in total assets under management, according to its website.