KKR, the world’s leading buyout investor is relocating its veteran Nathaniel Taylor from the firm’s Menlo Park office to Mumbai. Taylor’s move to the Mumbai office only reaffirms the private equity giant’s interest in India, which recently hired Sanjay Nayar, the former chief executive of Citibank India to lead its operations in the country.
Taylor’s acssociation to India is not new. He has been involved with KKR’s investments in Aricent, formerly known as Flextronics Software Systems and currently also sits on the board of directors of Aricent.
In one of the largest leverage buyouts in India till date, KKR acquired the software unit of Flextronics International Ltd. for $900 million in 2006. Taylor joined KKR in 2005 and is a member of the Technology industry team, and has been involved with firms’ other investments – SunGard Data Systems, and Sun Microsystems. Prior to joining KKR, Taylor was with Bain Capital where he was involved in the execution of investments in the retail, health care and technology sectors
KKR in India
Most recently, one of the co-founders of KKR, Henry Kravis was in the country following the buyout firm opening its shop in Mumbai. Kravis on his visit to India, which was part of an Asia tour told reporters that India is a special place for them and that they believe in the future of country.
However, the legendary buyout investor known for making leverage buyout deals was quick to admit that the market in India is different with “leverage not being important here”. The private equity firm will look at making growth capital investments in the country. He added, “we’re going to insist on board positions and improving operations even if we don’t own 100%”.
Adopting a cautious approach, the investor reportedly said that they have turned down a few deals in India and not rushing into investments. He also said that the fund looks at Asia as an attractive geography and would look at about 3-4 industries here. The fund’s latest investment in India was made in February 2008, when it invested $250 million in Bharti Infratel Ltd.
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