KKR Closes $2.8 Billion Fund Targeting UN Sustainability Goals

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by | Nov 7, 2023

Global investment firm KKR said it has closed a $2.8 billion investment fund dedicated to investing in companies that target the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Known as the KKR Global Impact Fund II, it is the successor to KKR’s first Global Impact Fund. The companies the fund will invest in offer products and services that contribute measurable progress toward the UN’s SDGs.

“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,” Robert Antablin, KKR partner and co-head of KKR Global Impact, said in a statement. “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.”

KKR has invested millions of dollars in companies where societal impact and financial performance are aligned. Last year, the company invested $400 million in Serentica Renewables, a decarbonization platform that provides clean energy solutions for energy-intensive industries.

Fund Targets

KKR’s Global Impact team was founded in 2018 and has invested in 18 companies including GreenCollar, CoolIT, Advanta, Lightcast (formerly known as Emsi Burning Glass), and CMC Machinery.

The Global Impact Fund II will focus on four key themes for its investments, including climate action, sustainable living, lifelong learning, and inclusive growth. According to KKR, the themes address climate change, reliance on non-renewable resources and increasing waste, lack of access to quality education and the widening skills gap, and social and economic inequality.

These challenges have resulted in a big shift that the fund aims to address. 

“Globally, there is increased urgency to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges, such as the energy transition, supply chain resiliency, digitization and a shortage of skilled workers. For example, analysis by KKR Global Impact portfolio company Lightcast found that the skills requested for the average U.S. job have changed 37% since 2016, requiring a significant acceleration of upskilling,” said Ken Mehlman, KKR Partner and Co-Head of KKR Global Impact. “We believe our Global Impact strategy is well-positioned to invest behind these macro tailwinds.”

The fund is backed by a diverse group of new and existing global investors, including public pensions, family offices, insurance companies, and other institutional investors. KKR will invest $250 million of capital from the fund, along with investors, through the firm’s balance sheet, affiliates, and employee commitments.

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