Sonneborn steps down from KKR

The former head of KKR Asset Management will stay on as a senior advisor.    

William Sonneborn has retired from his position as the head of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts Asset Management, the firm announced in a US Securities and Exchange Commission filed Tuesday. Sonneborn stepped down from his position on Wednesday.

He will continue with the firm as a senior advisor starting in October, a spokesperson told Private Debt Investor.

“He took the reins in December 2008 during the most challenging of environments with the credit crisis in full swing and KFN trading below $1.00 per share and having suspended its cash distributions to shareholders. Under Bill’s exceptional leadership, the Company’s share price has increased 15 times in under five years, and Bill leaves KFN well positioned for future opportunities through its strong capital structure and liquidity position,” said board chairman Paul Hazen in a statement. “While we are disappointed in Bill’s decision, we are grateful for all of his contributions and we wish him well in his future endeavors.”

The firm’s Board of Directors elected Craig Farr to succeed Sonneborn. Farr has been with KKR since 2006. Prior to that, he spent 12 years at Citigroup Global Markets, where had carried the title of managing director and co-head of North American Equity Capital Markets.

“I have had the pleasure of working with Craig Farr over the past five years and watching him build a strong new business unit within KKR during that period,” Sonneborn said in a statement. “Craig is superbly prepared to guide the continuous evolution of KFN for the best possible outcomes for shareholders.”

Sonneborn’s departure as head of KKR Asset Management did not trigger any key man provisions, a source with knowledge of the situation told Private Debt Investor.

KKR Asset Management invests in a variety of corporate equity and credit strategies including leveraged credit, liquid long/short equity strategies and alternative credit strategies such as mezzanine, special situations and direct senior lending. The firm launched the strategy in 2004. KKR Asset Management managed more than $16 billion across its fund and separate account businesses as of 30 June, according to its website.