KKR has more than $11bn for acquisitions

City A.M. Reporter
Private equity giant Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts has told investors it has more than $11bn (£6.8bn) available to buy companies.

KKR, which raised an $18bn global buyout fund in 2006, is just starting to raise a new North America-focused fund with a target size of $8-10bn.

"We believe that is incredible capital to take advantage of the opportunities we see in private equity around the globe," KKR partner Alexander Navab said, referring to the "dry powder."

With the financial crisis abating, private equity firms have been getting back into the market, hunting for deals to put billions of unspent dollars to work and exiting investments they made during the mergers boom before the crisis.

KKR, which has $61bn in assets under management, has been aggressive in both buyouts and exits.

The buyout shop, which has invested in companies such as retailer Dollar General and hospital operator HCA, has been lining up portfolio firms for initial public offerings.

Just last week, HCA went public in the biggest private equity-backed offering ever in the US.

Navab said monetisation activity so far this year would help the firm make more than $2bn in limited partner distributions.

"Buyout king" Henry Kravis, who co-founded KKR nearly 35 years ago, said he and co-founder George Roberts think about succession issues "every day," but added that their stepping down "I hope is in the distant future."

Kravis said KKR had a deep bench of potential successors.

Since its July 15 debut on the New York Stock Exchange, KKR shares have risen nearly 70 per cent.