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KKR backs French software company Ivalua through tech fund

  • KKR closed Next Generation Tech Growth Fund in December
  • Third announced deal since close
  • Firm previously invested in VC, tech off balance sheet

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co invested $70 million in French software company Ivalua from its $711 million Next Generation Technology Growth Fund, which held a final close in December.

KKR had announced two other deals since the fund closed, including an investment in ride-sharing company Lyft’s $600 million Series G round and a $50 million investment in Cherwell Software, an IT-service provider.

The deal marks KKR’s fourth investment in a French tech company over the past several years, “which speaks to the strength of the local technology ecosystem,” KKR Director Lucian Schoenefelder said in a statement.

Ivalua Founder and CEO David Khuat-Duy and Ardian are retaining stakes in the business, the news release says.

Ivalua’s software helps businesses manage how they spend money and procure services, for management of contracts and relationships with vendors through a single platform. Its customer base includes the City of New York, as well as companies like Honeywell and Michelin.

“We were highly impressed by Ivalua’s best-in-class product, strong founder-led team, and demonstrated ability to scale with both high growth and profitability,” KKR Principal Stephen Shanley said in a statement. “We look forward to deploying the full resources of the KKR platform to help accelerate Ivalua’s ambitious growth strategy.”

The firm declined to comment beyond the press release.

The Next Generation Technology Growth fund marks KKR’s first dedicated fund for venture and tech-related investments. The firm previously invested in venture and growth stage deals off its balance sheet, which included its stakes in FanDuel, a fantasy sports application, and Magic Leap, a virtual reality business.

Action Item: More about KKR: www.kkr.com 

The French flag is pictured at the Elysee Palace following the weekly cabinet meeting in Paris on May 4, 2016. Photo courtesy/Jacky Naegelen