Rauner places investments in blind trust

Venture capitalist and soon-to-be governor Bruce Rauner and his wife on Friday announced they have placed their investments in a blind trust —  a pledge Rauner promised during his campaign to avoid conflicts of interest from his extensive financial holdings.

Rauner will be sworn in  Monday and was expected to have the blind trust in place before being in a position to take official actions.

Under the blind trust, Rauner and his wife, Diana, will grant Roundtable Investment Partners exclusive power of attorney, giving the company control of every investment, including the buying and selling of assets, according to a Rauner press release.

All communications will be directed to an adviser and not to the Rauners, under the new procedures in place. And all gains from investments that have Illinois state contracts will be donated to charity.

Calling the decision the “most ethical and transparent” way for Rauner to avoid conflicts, Rauner spokesman Mike Schrimpf said Rauner will not be involved in any investment decisions while in office.

“This is the strongest possible structure that both establishes blind trust procedures and allows Bruce and Diana to fully comply with the state’s economic disclosure laws moving forward,” Schrimpf said in the release.

Rauner  in 2012 stepped down from his role as chairman of Chicago based private equity firm GTCR, of which he was an early partner, then created the small firm R8 Capital Partners, which invested in smaller Illinois companies. Rauner has said he quit GTCR because it invested on behalf of state and local pension funds and he wanted to focus on civic efforts.

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