KKR CFO switch, ESG wind blows over from Europe

Europe leads the way on ESG, but change is coming to the US; update to our cybersecurity consultants database; how to tick off a CFO; key trends in carry, waterfalls and incentives

First up: Industry giant KKR has pushed the button on its CFO succession plan, with 20-year incumbent Bill Janetschek making way at the end of this year for Rob Lewin. Lewin joined the firm in 2004 initially as a private equity deal maker. He helped launch the firm’s Asia business and also oversaw its sizeable balance sheet as treasurer and head of corporate development. KKR press release here.

ESG: It isn’t a secret that Europe has been on the leading edge of capital markets ESG investing. Being a United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment signatory no longer even merits much attention from European investors. Even San Francisco-based Genstar Capital told us its engagement in ESG came in response to European investors, as CFO Melissa Dickerson told us in this month’s cover story, “How ESG will become a CFO issue.”

Duff & Phelps yesterday published a survey indicating that 67 percent of senior people in the alternative investments industry think that regulators aren’t doing enough to regulate ESG investments and ensure ESG claims are accurate. The survey was taken at the firm’s European Alternative Investment Conference, and represents nearly 90 senior executives.

US GPs are lagging their European peers on the ESG front, but change is coming. PE giant EnCap Investments is working on standardizing ESG reporting from its portfolio companies so it can report fund-level ESG performance. In the US, the SEC is, at a high level, showing interest in how managers who purport to have ESG policies adhere to them. Future regulation could jumpstart the standardization of ESG reporting in the US.

Database update: We’ve updated our database of cybersecurity consultants with details for ACA Aponix (private equity clients with $50 million to $130 billion in AUM).

Roundtable: Off the back of the roundtable on fund administration, we asked the CFO attendees what services providers do that ticks them off the most.

Special report: From our special report, here are five key trends in carry, waterfalls and incentives. The takeaway: most firms still rely on traditional systems for calculating carry, but the need for transparency is driving automation.

Email prepared by Graham Bippart