Leveraged buyouts have gone in and out of popularity over the last four decades. The first wave began in the 1980's with the rising popularity of junk bonds, followed by years of economic downturn, and then a rise and respective fall from the dot com era. However, in the 2000's, attitudes were high and a period of low interest rates, covenant-lite loans, and relaxed lending conditions gave rise to some of the largest leveraged buyouts in US history. As the name implies, leveraged buyouts are predominantly structured with debt, around 70% of the total transaction value. Private equity firms execute leveraged buyouts on companies in strong industries, who have proven, stable cash flows, with the intent of cutting costs, divesting unneeded assets, and making the chain more efficient. After a time period of five to seven years, the private equity firm exits the deal through an initial public offering of the target company, a sale to another buyer, or dividend recapitalization. The Blackstone Group is one of the largest private equity firms in the US, and, with the favorable leveraged buyout conditions, especially in the real estate market, it wanted to build its real estate portfolio with an acquisition of Hilton Hotels & Resorts. At the time of consideration, Hilton was one of the largest hotel companies in the world, but was beginning to lag compared to its competitors Marriott and Starwood. After months of talks, Hilton agreed to be bought out by Blackstone at $47.50/share, for a total purchase price of $26bn. Blackstone had injected $5.7 of its own equity into the deal. The Great Recession caused a lot of investors to worry about Hilton's debt obligations, and Blackstone was able to restructure a significant portion of the debt to benefit both themselves and their creditors. As new CEO, Christopher J. Nassetta was able to strengthen Hilton by rearranging management, increasing franchising fees, expanding its capital-lite segments, and building more rooms internationally, Hilton was able to grow quicker than its competitors from 2007-2013 while minimizing operating expenses. On December 2, 2013, Hilton went public on the NYSE as HLT. Its enterprise value increased from $26bn to $33bn, and Blackstone was able to achieve an internal rate of return of 19%, while continuing to own 75% of Hilton's shares.