Ian Fujiyama

Private Equity SpecialistInvestments

Class of 1990


By Gloria Kobayashi

Ian Fujiyama is a managing director at the Carlyle Group working in their U.S. buyout effortsgroup.  The Carlyle Group is a global private equity firm with global influence that currently manages about $45 billion of capital.  The term “private equity” means that the company invests incovers a variety of investment types that include venture capital, real estate, high yield debt and buyouts around the world.  Ian is in charge of buyouts of companies in the federal and commercial information technology and business services areas.  When a company is involved in a buyout with the Carlyle Group, their Carlyle helps these companies achieve their strategic goals through involvement on the companys board of directors and expertise in running a business and in providing additional funds to helps the company grow.  Although he works with huge sums of money, which makes his job very interesting and challenging, Ian says his job is not glamorous.



        Ian began working with the Carlyle Group when it was still a tiny relatively small firm with fewer than 100 employees and only about 2% of its present capital base with one a single office  based in Washington, D.C.  He helped the company establish their Asian buyout efforts, Carlyle Asia Partners, and spent two years, from 1999 to 2001, in Hong Kong.  While there, he worked in China, South Korea, the Philippines, Thailand and Taiwan.  His major effort was closing an investment in a South Korean commercial bank, KorAm, with approximately $450 million in equity.  This was the largest equity commitment for the company at that time and very successful, when the company sold it for a profit to CitiGroupCitigroup.


        Ian graduated from the Wharton School of Business in 1994 with a degree in economics andwith a concentration in finance.  He began his career with an internship forwith an investment bank called Donaldson, Lufkin and Jenrette.  After graduation, he spent three years with the firm learning corporate finance and working on investment banking projects such as: initial public offerings, new debt issuances, merger and acquisition work and restructuring and, but also principal investments in private equity funding.  These experiences led him to his association with the Carlyle Group, through which he has met former president, George Bush and several Prime Ministers.


        Balancing work and home is Ian’s biggest challenge.  His He has three children: t.  Twin boys, whothat are are ages three, and a daughter whothat is four.   and hHis work schedule often means traveling and long hours.  He said that when he first began working, he regularly worked over 100 hours a week.  Now that he is more settled, his hours are at a much more manageable level.


        Ian graduated from Waiakea High School in 1990 and chose to go to school on the East Coast rather than toover a schools in Californiaonut Wwest Coast because of the challenge of going farther away.  Although his freshmen year at the University of Pennsylvania was a real wake up call, he says the academic foundation that he got at Waiakea allowed him to graduate with honorsdo well at Penn, and later on, in business.  His parents’ businesses taught him early about the importance of hard work, from scraping gum off the parking lot to annual budget meetings.

 is advice to students wanting to work in corporate finance is to take care of the basics.  Get good grades, work experience and technical skills and doors will open for you.  His company hires only the top graduates, whether in two-year or four-year programs.  Graduates have at least four years of work experience.  Next, find a role model who will help you determine if a job fits you.  Do you like the work?  Do you like the people you work with?  Can you make a difference?  Are you willing to make personal sacrifices to succeed?  Hustle.  Be prepared to work long hours to learn the job, not for the pay, but for the experience and knowledge you’ll gain.  Finally, don’t be afraid to take chances and aim high!

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