Ex-CarVal CIO joins opportunistic credit at Kennedy Lewis

As chairman, John Brice will work with KLIM’s founders on strategic initiatives.

Kennedy Lewis Investment Management has hired CarVal co-founder, president and chief investment officer John Brice as chairman, the firm said in a statement issued last week.

In his new role at KLIM, which was not available for immediate comment, Brice will be working on strategic initiatives with the firm’s executive management committee.

Managing partners David Chene and Darren Richman launched the catalyst-driven credit fund in 2017. John Bertrand, Niles Chura, Mark Crawford and Anthony Pasqua are all partners at the firm. Bertrand also acts as head of business development, while Pasqua is also chief financial officer. Jerome Herschman is the firm’s controller.

Both Chene and Crawford have previously worked with Brice. At CarVal, the alternative management arm of agriculture giant Cargill, Chene spent nearly five years as the head of corporate securities while Crawford spent eight-and-a-half years as a senior analyst specialising in special situations.

During his tenure at CarVal, Brice reportedly grew the Minneapolis-based firm’s assets to more than $10 billion. CarVal focuses on distressed investing across corporate securities, liquidations, loan portfolios and structured credit.

Brice made headlines two years ago when CarVal reportedly forced him out of his seat amid M&A discussions with potential buyers including Blackstone and Carlyle. Previously, Cargill had already spun out Black River Asset Management, another investment subsidiary with $7 billion in assets, in 2015.

KLIM invests in opportunistic credit and targets companies that contain “unsustainable capital structures [or] lack access to traditional sources of capital”. The firm is aiming for a 1.5x multiple on invested capital, and is agnostic across industry, geography and security type.