KKR raises more than $2 billion to buy fast growing tech firms


KKR & Co. has gathered more than $2 billion to invest in fast-growing technology companies as it further expands beyond the mega-deals that made its reputation.

The firm is raising its second fund dedicated to growth-equity investments in technology, media and telecommunications, according to a person familiar with the matter. The fund, which is expected to close by year’s end, is about triple the size of the debut vehicle: the KKR Next Generation Technology Growth Fund raised $714 million in 2016.

KKR’s fundraising haul comes as big buyout shops are increasingly targeting startups, aiming to bolster returns with faster-growing firms. TPG was one of the first private equity firms to raise an earlier-stage growth fund more than a decade ago, betting on companies such as Airbnb Inc. and Uber Technologies Inc.

KKR invested in companies including cybersecurity firm KnowBe4 Inc., OneStream Software LLC and Lyft Inc. through its first growth fund. David Welsh oversees tech, media and telecom growth equity within KKR’s private equity platform.

A spokeswoman for the New York-based firm, which had $206 billion in assets under management as of June 30, declined to comment.

Bloomberg News