In an odd twist, The Carlyle Group purchased a large chunk of a South Korean cable operator just hours after Kim Jong-il tested a small nuclear device underground in North Korea. They invested $169 million in U.S. dollars into the venture, acquiring on third of the company. While this is pocket change for the $44 billion behemoth, they aren’t putting their money down to lose it. How will this impact the President’s position on North Korea? A Carlyle principal, ex. Sec. of State James Baker III is already heading up the Iraq Study Group. Will the President also seek his counsel on North Korea?
As the President spreads democracy he creates the conditions for U.S. businesses to reap the benefits, Carlyle included. They just got inducted into the Private Equity Hall of Fame for venturing into new geographies. How much did the President pave the way for some of these investments? Will they soon have the opportunity to grow their brand spanking new investment via offering cable services in North Korea? Time will tell…..