KKR has made a minority investment in arago AG. Financial terms weren’t announced. Frankfurt, Germany-based arago provides IT automation.
FRANKFURT, Germany & LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–KKR, a leading global investment firm, today announced a minority investment in arago AG, the German-based specialist in IT automation which is managed by the company’s founders Chris Boos and Dr. Bernhard Walther. KKR will support arago’s global expansion with primary capital. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
arago AG’s key product is “AutoPilot”, a knowledge-based automation platform, which was developed over the last eight years. The platform is based on a unique combination of different technologies and high-performance algorithms. It enables companies to automate their entire IT-Stack, including heterogeneous IT environments and individual applications. AutoPilot applies reusable knowledge modules for processing tasks in a dynamic way and enables automation rates of up to almost 90 percent.
This visionary approach was acknowledged amongst others by Gartner analysts who named arago “Cool Vendor in IT Operations 2014”, a designation given to those who support digitalization and the notion of “Big Change”. arago’s technology is used by large corporations with complex IT systems such as banks, telecommunication companies, IT service providers and outsourcers.
Chris Boos, CEO and co-Founder of arago AG, commented: “I have worked on algorithmic software development for the last 25 years. With AutoPilot, we have developed a unique technology that is proven and highly scalable. We have found a partner in KKR that immediately understood our technology and product vision and will support our global roll-out with capital, operational resources and access to its global network.”
Commenting on the reasons for choosing KKR as an investor, Chris said: “I believe that we have seen a lot of disruption in the B2C space and that the next wave of drastic change will be seen in enterprise. Our automation solution, for example, is disruptive to the way enterprises run IT. This is where KKR’s strong network and understanding of B2B business models is highly valuable to us.”
Philipp Freise, Member and Head of the European Media & Digital investment team at KKR, added: “For KKR, this investment is about supporting the global development of a cutting-edge German technology company founded and run by a world class entrepreneur. arago is an excellent example of Europe’s ability to produce outstanding technology companies and we believe our partnership will demonstrate the role KKR can play in helping such companies to become global champions.”
Lucian Schönefelder, Director of the European Media & Digital Investment team at KKR, added: “We are proud to partner with Chris Boos, who is a true visionary and who has built a unique technology. This investment fits into our strategy of supporting European B2B companies in their global growth ambitions through access to KKR’s global network of companies and domain experts.”
KKR has a long track record of supporting companies in technology, having invested more than $9 billion of equity since 1999 in more than 20 technology companies across different sub-sectors including software, online companies and semi-conductors. Recent partnership oriented growth investments include BMG, Fotolia and Ringier Digital. In addition to its long track record of investing, KKR has a unique vantage point from its private equity portfolio that is comprised of more than 90 companies that together spend nearly $10 billion on IT annually.
The arago investment is part of KKR’s newly established growth equity effort, which focuses on selective investments in fast-growing, tech-enabled companies that sell highly differentiated products with global market potential and which are led by outstanding founders.
“KKR’s growth equity initiative is highly tailored towards the needs of entrepreneurs. Investing into companies like arago also gives us a unique perspective when we look at larger investments across different sectors”, Philipp Freise said.
Other recent growth equity investments by KKR include Ping Identity, an identity security company whose technology aims to protect people’s identity as they traverse myriad connected devices and cloud-connected applications at work and at home.
KKR is funding the investment primarily from the balance sheet of KKR & Co. LP (NYSE:KKR).
Founded in Frankfurt am Main 1995, arago is specialized in the automation of IT operations. The company uses modern technologies such as inference and machine learning in order to automatically operate the entire IT stack – from heterogeneous environments to individual applications. Their knowledge-based automation solution, AutoPilot, enables companies to reduce their operating budget as well as to optimize their IT efficiently – without the need for IT standardization. Please visit for further information: www.arago.co and www.autopilot.co.
KKR is a leading global investment firm that manages investments across multiple asset classes including private equity, energy, infrastructure, real estate, credit and hedge funds. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people, and driving growth and value creation at the asset level. KKR invests its own capital alongside its partners’ capital and brings opportunities to others through its capital markets business. References to KKR’s investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds. For additional information about KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR), please visit KKR’s website at www.kkr.com.