Storied Equity Firm KKR Goes Public Today

Firm's aggressive moves inspired Barbarians at the Gate
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted Jul 28, 2008 6:06 AM CDT
Investment banker Henry Kravis and wife Marie arrives at the Fox Business Network's Launch Party, Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2007, in New York.    (AP Photo/ Louis Lanzano)
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(Newser) – Legendary buyout firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.—battling the credit crunch and moribund in the deal-making department this year—will go public this morning in an attempt to kick-start its business and take over its flagging European affiliate, reports the Wall Street Journal. KKR could be worth up to $15 billion when it hits the New York Stock Exchange.

The private equity firm was made famous by its 1989 buyout of RJR Nabisco, which inspired the Barbarians at the Gate book and movie. In the complicated deal, KKR will buy its Amsterstam affiliate KKR Private Equity Investors, and 79% of the company shares will remain under the control of its executives. No additional public shares are planned for the deal, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter.