By Christian Ollig Sep 20, 2018
When KKR made its first investment in Germany in 1999, Private Equity was a barely known industry at the heart of Europe and KKR one of the first players. By now, however, we have invested more than $5 billion equity here. With the opening of our Frankfurt office, we are now taking the logical next step in our long-standing engagement in Germany. This move brings us even closer to local investors and companies, will help us attract further talent, and sends out a strong signal of our commitment to Germany, one of our key markets.
Looking back at 20 years of activity here, we are proud to see a significant number of successful investment decisions that we made based on our proven two-fold investment strategy: thoroughly managing complexity on the one hand and partnering with our portfolio companies on the other. The success of this approach has become apparent in the handling of complex transactions in Germany, such as carve-outs from Daimler, Siemens and Airbus, as well as digital transformation stories like GfK. In all of these cases, we make sure that our contribution goes far beyond just providing capital: taking our investments in Wild Flavors, WMF or Bertelsmann Music Rights as examples, we ensure that we also contribute operational expertise and access to our global network. This is what makes our partnership approach so successful.
Through more than 20 successful investments since 1999, we have built trusting long-term relationships with management teams, family businesses, entrepreneurs and unions. Over the years, Germany has developed into one of our most important markets in Europe, and one where we hold a market-leading position in Private Equity. Today, we offer much more than Private Equity in Germany. We have established further types of investment very successfully – from credit to infrastructure, growth and real estate, thus offering flexible capital solutions. These are more recent strategies in Germany that we want to continue and expand further.
The new office underlines KKR's particular strength – combining local presence and a strong German team with our global network and global resources. The particular market specifics are an ideal fit for our investment rationale. Many local medium-sized companies have strong brands and are well-positioned in their individual niches, but lack the resources and experience to scale internationally or to transform their businesses in the digital age. We help these companies to open up new markets and internationalize their business models. At the same time, we offer our extensive international platform to share best practices and insights across markets and industries.
Frankfurt is becoming increasingly important and attractive as a financial center. With our new office in Frankfurt we are placing ourselves at the heart of Germany’s business community and at the side of our investors and portfolio companies.