KKR, a global investment firm, has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Ritchies Transport Ltd., a transportation operator in New Zealand. The investment marks KKR’s first infrastructure investment in New Zealand.

Upon completion of the transaction, the Ritchie family will continue to hold a stake in Ritchies. Director of operations Andrew Ritchie will be appointed as CEO of the company as Glenn Ritchie retires from Ritchies.

Glenn Ritchie said, “This deal is a real milestone for our business. After 86 years, we are confident that the Company will continue to demonstrate the family values that have been a strong part of our identity and culture, as we’ve built Ritchies into one of New Zealand’s largest and most successful transport operators.”

Andrew Ritchie said, “Joining the KKR family is the start of an exciting new chapter for the company. Glenn has been an integral part of the business for most of his life, and been instrumental in helping the company achieve its growth and success as a nationwide transport operator. He has left an indelible mark on the company and its staff and will be missed. We would like to thank our many loyal customers and staff all over New Zealand, many of whom have been with Ritchies along our journey. Now it’s time to leverage KKR’s expertise to help take Ritchies forward as we look to the next 86 years.”

David Luboff, partner and Head of Asia Pacific Infrastructure at KKR, said, “For over 80 years, Ritchies Transport has been the trusted provider of local and regional transport in communities across New Zealand, and we are excited to invest in a successful, leading business like Ritchies and work alongside its talented management team. Our investment also reiterates KKR’s strong commitment to investing in critical infrastructure assets in New Zealand and globally through our expanding portfolio.”

Andrew Jennings, a director on KKR’s Infrastructure team, said, “We see continued demand for high-quality, greener public transport solutions in New Zealand. Buses account for 75% of total public transport trips made in the country and play a critical role in connecting people to places. They also represent a highly visible opportunity to encourage the adoption of zero-emissions technology. We look forward to working closely with the Ritchie family to continue their legacy and working in partnership with the government to deliver safe, reliable and sustainable public transport services.”

KKR is making this investment from the KKR Asia Pacific Infrastructure Fund.

Rothschild & Co. acted as KKR’s financial advisor. Cameron Partners acted as Ritchies’ financial advisor.