KKR to acquire 24.9 percent stake in UK hedge fund Marshall Wace: Reuters

(Reuters) — KKR & Co LP (KKR) will acquire a stake in one of Europe’s biggest hedge fund operators Marshall Wace, the private equity firm said on Wednesday, raising its bets on the rapidly growing $3 trillion industry.

KKR will acquire a 24.9 percent stake in the $22 billion hedge fund firm with an option to raise it to 39.9 percent, the firm said in a statement. The two firms did not disclose the deal value but said the majority of the proceeds will be reinvested in Marshall Wace’s funds or held in KKR stock.

The deal marks an effort by KKR to boost its presence in the relatively liquid market for alternative funds as the sector attracts increasing interest from the world’s biggest investment institutions such as pension funds and endowments.

“While Marshall Wace’s core operations and investment process will not change, we believe we will be able to build on the complementary relationships and skills of both firms,” Ian Wace, chief executive of Marshall Wace, said in a statement.