KKR & Co. (KKR) Plans to Enter Japan's Private Credit Market

KKR & Co. Inc. KKR is looking to enter the private credit market in Japan to offer an alternative to bank loans. This will strengthen its foothold in Japan.

The CEO of KKR Japan revealed this in an interview with Bloomberg. He said, “It will be a medium to long-term initiative. I think it is very important in Japan that we do it ourselves.”

The $1.7 trillion global private credit industry has witnessed significant growth in the United States and Europe by targeting companies with high credit risk and private equity funds needing assistance in financing acquisitions. In Japan, direct lending has been sought by overseas companies for the most part, and the domestic loan market is led by major banks.

Furthermore, Japan constitutes roughly 40% of KKR’s investment in Asia. The company noted that Japan-based firms are willing to divest non-core operations that carry the potential to perform better as independent entities. Such divestitures, at times, offer higher returns compared with other investments.

“An overwhelming number of Japanese companies and businesses have the potential to grow, but are not performing well enough,” Hirano further added.

KKR & Co. intends to expand its offerings to institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals within the country. It is currently engaged in discussions with domestic securities companies to offer products for individual investors. It already operates as a joint venture asset management company with SBI Holdings Inc. KKR will offer enhanced accessibility to its funds to institutional investors.

KKR & Co. has been engaged in expansionary initiatives in order to boost its client base as well as enhance its asset class offerings. Last month, it entered into a strategic partnership with Capital Group to augment alternative investment solutions for client portfolios. This move aims to make hybrid public-private market investment solutions available to investors across asset classes, channels and geographies. In October 2023, the company announced expansion plans in India, with a new office launch in Gurugram.

Shares of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company have jumped 37.2% in the past six months, outperforming the industry’s growth of 16.2%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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Other Financial Services Firms Taking Steps to Boost Private Credit

Last month, Raymond James RJF announced its plan to enter into the lucrative private credit business. Through its Investment Banking (“IB”) division, the company has formed a strategic collaboration with Eldridge Industries and Raymond James Bank. Spearheading this expansion is Omer Masud, a seasoned credit industry expert appointed as the head of sponsor finance origination.

The newly formed Raymond James Private Credit aims to cater private credit solutions to portfolio companies of private equity firms. Leveraging Raymond James' robust IB platform, RJF Bank's lending prowess and Eldridge Industries' asset management expertise, the venture is poised to strengthen relationships with leading PE firms, particularly in key sectors such as consumer, diversified industrials, healthcare and technology & services.

Similarly, this April, Barclays PLC BCS made a push into the private credit market. The firm, along with AGL Credit Management, a premier investment manager specializing in corporate credit strategies, announced a cooperation agreement and the launch of a private credit investment platform, AGL Private Credit (AGL PC).

The platform combines AGL’s established credit capability with proprietary access to BCS’ leading leveraged finance and investment banking origination capabilities.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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