KKR Passes The Torch

Issue 92

Henry Kravis and George Roberts, whose unprecedented expansion of leveraged buyouts of the 1980s made them the face of the private equity industry, are stepping down as co-chief executives of KKR, the firm they founded in 1976.

The firm’s longtime co-presidents, Scott Nuttall and Joe Bae, will together take the helm, KKR said on Monday. Kravis and Roberts will remain executive chairs of the board of directors and maintain relationships with investors and offer counsel on the firm’s strategy.

KKR chief competitors including the Carlyle Group, Apollo Global Management and TPG have in recent years seen their long-standing founders pass the torch to a new generation as the $4tn private equity industry matures and moves beyond debt-driven corporate acquisitions. “We could not be more excited about this moment in time,” said Kravis, 77, and Roberts, 78, in a joint statement. “There is such a huge need for private capital to support businesses, and KKR still has so much potential even 45 years later.”

Source: Financial Times