Stanford Looks to Sell Off $1 B in Assets

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Lee Brimelow
    Stanford University

    Stanford is thinking about having a huge sale.

    But for this sale, they won't be putting price tags on school supplies or degrees from the prestigious university. Instead, it is trying to sell off about $1 billion of its portfolio of assets, including investments in venture capital.

    The school recently revealed that their endowment, which funds a big portion of its budget, is expected to decline 30 percent to $12 billion -- a drop of about $4.6 billion -- this year. The loss forced many layoffs at the school.

    They'll only sell if the price is right, John Powers, the CEO of the Stanford Management Company said Friday.

    "We are not a distressed seller," Powers told Reuters, "so we're quite willing to not do it if we don't get terms we are comfortable with."

    It sounds like a big chunk but it is only between 10 and 20 percent of the school's interests in illiquid assests across a number of partnerships.

    The sale would raise the liquidity of the university's holdings and help rebalance their portfolio, Powers said.

    Stanford insists the exploration of the sale doesn't mean the school is in trouble. Instead, sources say, it's a strategic move that will prevent the chances of the university of becoming a pawn in possible private equity deals in the future.

    Bids from interested funds are expected by the end of October.