The close underscores the firm’s commitment to contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The fund will target four key investment themes: climate action, sustainable living, lifelong learning and inclusive growth.
KKR, a US-based alternative asset manager, closed its Global Impact Fund II to new investors after raising $2.8bn. The firm’s first global impact fund, which launched in 2018, raised $1.3bn from investors, making it one of the biggest of its kind at the time.
KKR’s second impact fund, which is aimed at addressing social and environmental problems, received “strong backing from a diverse group of new and existing global investors, including public pensions, family offices, insurance companies, and other institutional investors”, KKR said in a press release.
When contacted by Impact Investor, the New York-based private equity firm declined to disclose the identities of the investors.
KKR said it would be investing $250m of capital into the fund through its balance sheet, affiliates and employee commitments.
The new impact fund will invest in companies whose products and services contribute measurable progress toward the UN SDGs, the firm said. It will target four key investment themes: climate action, sustainable living, lifelong learning and inclusive growth.
“We launched KKR Global Impact in 2018 because we saw an opportunity to invest behind proven companies that deliver scalable, commercial solutions to global problems,” said Robert Antablin, KKR partner and co-head of KKR Global Impact.
“Since then, that opportunity set has continued to grow, and we are thrilled with the outcomes our portfolio companies have been able to achieve. We are grateful for the support of our investors who share our conviction in this space, which we believe is well placed given the strong performance of our first fund.”
Since its launch in 2018, KKR Global Impact has invested in 18 companies including GreenCollar, Australia’s biggest environmental markets investor, natural resource manager and conservation-for-profit organisation, CoolIT, which helps data centres to cut energy consumption with cooling liquid, and CMC Machinery, which makes automated packaging solutions in Italy.
Since its inception five years ago, KKR’s global impact team has grown to more than 20 employees.
“Globally, there is increased urgency to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges, such as the energy transition, supply chain resiliency, digitisation and a shortage of skilled workers,” said Ken Mehlman, KKR partner and co-head of KKR Global Impact.
Mehlman pointed to analysis by Lightcast, a leader in labour market analytics and one of the KKR Global Impact’s portfolio companies, which found that the skills requested for the average US job have changed measurably since 2016. This development demands a “significant acceleration of upskilling,” of the American workforce, Mehlman said.
“We believe our global impact strategy is well-positioned to invest behind these macro tailwinds,” Mehlman added.