KKR’s “Un-IPO” Gets More Traditional, Firm Looks To Raise $500 Million

KKR is expected to list on the New York Stock Exchange sometime this summer, in what many have referred to as the private equity giant’s “IPO.” I’ve steadfastly resisted the acronym, because KKR had not indicated plans to “offer” anything. Instead, it simply was transferring its listing from Amsterdam to New York. As such, I began referring to the move as KKR’s “un-IPO.”

But today I relent. The firm just filed with the SEC for a $500 million capital raise that would happen either simultaneous to the listing transfer, or sometime afterwards. Not a pure IPO, but closer than not.

The offering would be purely dilutive, as none of the firm’s principals or major shareholders are selling current holdings. Instead, KKR says that it “expects to deploy the proceeds from this offering primarily in lower risk assets and cash.”

KKR clearly believes that the public markets will be receptive. After all, it could have done the list transfer without an additional equity raise. Or at least held off on the S-1 filing until the recent market volatility ebbed (particularly given that KKR’s 2005 European fund is by far its worst-performer). On the other hand, perhaps the idea is to piggyback on the proposed $4.6 billion IPO from portfolio company HCA (which filed last Friday)…

Not a huge amount of other new information in today’s filing, given that KKR already had been issuing quarterly reports in preparation on the re-listing. For example, we already knew that Henry Kravis and George Roberts this year will receive $300,000 base salaries (plus distributions and cash bonuses).

The fund performance data also is a stale rehash of figures through the end of 2009 (was sort of hoping for Q1 2010 numbers). If you didn’t see those figures last time, you can find them in the filing.