Falk set to leave KKR, Boulanger to join as PM – exclusive

Erik Falk will exit his senior position a year after former credit head Craig Farr headed to The Carlyle Group.

KKR will shuffle two high-level private credit positions this year, sources familiar with the matter have told Private Debt Investor.

Global head of private credit Erik Falk is set to leave the firm, while Matthieu Boulanger, previously of HPS Investment Partners, will join the New York-based alternative asset manager in a private credit portfolio manager position. In his previous post, Boulanger was head of HPS Europe and before that oversaw private debt investments in the US and Europe.

In 2008, KKR hired Falk, who sits on the investment committees for private credit and leveraged credit as well as the portfolio management committee for KKR Credit. The reasons behind his exit were not immediately clear. Before KKR, Falk was a managing director at Deutsche Bank Securities. Falk could not immediately be reached for comment.

KKR, which declined to comment on the people moves, also recently hired Claus Benkert to KKR Capstone as its head of European operations effective 1 March. Benkert, who joins KKR from McKinsey & Company consulting firm, will also serve on the European portfolio management committee, which has jurisdiction over private equity, infrastructure and credit.

The firm’s credit arm is run by co-heads of credit Alan Burke and Nathaniel Zilkha, responsible for leveraged credit and private credit, respectively.

The men replaced former credit head Craig Farr, who left the firm to take a position with the Carlyle Group in February 2015. Carlyle has continued to build out its private debt practice, bringing on Mark Jenkins, formerly of Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, as the global co-head of credit, as well as Ben Schryber, formerly of First Avenue Partners, as a credit sales managing director.

KKR is currently investing its Special Situations Fund II along with Lending Partners II and Lending Partners Europe vehicles, according to its fourth quarter earnings materials released Thursday. Lending Partners II, which had an is set to wrap up in June and has $487.7 million of uncalled capital of the $1.34 billion raised. The firm raised $12.6 billion of new capital in 2016.

Early last month, KKR announced a $60 million financing commitment to Slayback Pharma as part of the firm's healthcare growth equity effort. The funding is to help the company speed up the development of its generic and specialty pharmaceutical products, according to the statement.

It wrapped up 2016 with several sizeable transactions, including an aggregate of $275 million in commitments holiday park operator Roompot and advertising company Exterion Media. It also extended €200 million financing to Spanish dental company Dentix to expand its international practice.