TOKYO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Leading global investment firm KKR today announced the appointment of Atsushi Saito, former President and CEO of the Tokyo Stock Exchange (“TSE”) and the Japan Exchange Group (“JPX”), as Non-Executive Chairman of KKR Japan, effective August 1, 2015.
Commenting on the appointment, Henry R. Kravis, Co-Founder, Co-Chairman and Co-CEO, said, “We are extremely fortunate to have Mr. Atsushi Saito join us. He brings immense expertise gained through his distinguished career, where he has worked and advocated to bring value to companies and uphold the highest corporate governance standards.”
Joseph Y. Bae, Managing Partner of KKR Asia, added, “We across KKR Asia and, indeed, our global network, look forward to learning from his vast insights as we work to invest in the highest caliber companies and then to help them enter new markets.”
Mr. Saito has been an influential member of Japan’s business community through his decades-long career. He most recently helped to promote Japan’s public markets activity and enhance corporate governance reporting standards in his leadership roles at Japan’s exchange groups.
“KKR has cultivated a strong reputation by investing alongside some of Japan’s leading companies, taking a long-term partnership approach to business management, and adding value beyond capital. KKR has helped Japanese companies become more competitive both in Japan and worldwide, doing so while being mindful of Japanese business culture and values. I’m proud to be Chairman of a team that exhibits these principles, and I look forward to assisting KKR Japan in its continuous effort to improve the corporate values and governance of Japanese companies,” Mr. Saito said.
“Mr. Saito’s experiences across investment, management and policy will better enable KKR to partner with strong business owners and stakeholders in Japan and pursue new opportunities during this exciting time for investment,” said Hiro Hirano, Member & CEO of KKR Japan. “Saito-san’s outstanding expertise and network will add value to our partners, portfolio, investors and KKR.”
Mr. Saito served as Group CEO, President and Representative Executive Officer of JPX from January 2013 to his retirement in June 2015. He previously served as the President and CEO of TSE from June 2007, and in August 2007 he became the first President and CEO of the Tokyo Stock Exchange Group, Inc., the holding company of the TSE and self-regulatory corporation of the exchange. In this capacity, he oversaw the merger of TSE and the Osaka Securities Exchange, Ltd. – now the Osaka Exchange, Inc. – to form JPX in January 2013.
Prior to his time at TSE, Mr. Saito was the President and CEO of the Industrial Revitalization Corporation of Japan (“IRCJ”), a government-sponsored group focused on turnaround investments. While at IRCJ, Mr. Saito demonstrated strong leadership in the revitalization of several Japanese companies, and he took the lead in educating many professionals who are now leaders in Japan’s business community.
In addition to these roles, Mr. Saito was a CEO of Sumitomo Life Investment Co., Ltd. He previously held various executive roles at Nomura Securities Co., and was appointed as a member of Nomura’s board in 1986. He has been a Member of the Board of the World Federation of Exchanges.
KKR has an established track record of investing in and supporting Japanese companies’ growth. In 2010, KKR invested in leading Japanese integrated human resources company Intelligence Holdings (“Intelligence”), and divested the company in 2013 to Temp Holdings. During their three-year partnership, KKR assisted Intelligence in introducing a number of operational key performance indicators and sales and recruitment initiatives, which enabled revenues to grow by 45%, EBITDA to increase by 170%, and a 37% rise in headcount.1
KKR extended its track record in Japan in 2014 and 2015 with the successful carve-outs of Panasonic Corporation’s heath care unit and Pioneer Corporation’s DJ equipment unit. Both standalone companies, Panasonic Healthcare and Pioneer DJ, respectively, are focused on international expansion. In June 2015, Panasonic Healthcare strengthened its commitment to providing high-quality and life-enhancing products patients globally through the purchase of Bayer Aktiengesellschaft’s diabetes care unit, headquartered in Basel, Switzerland.
KKR is a leading global investment firm that manages investments across multiple asset classes including private equity, energy, infrastructure, real estate, credit and hedge funds. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people, and driving growth and value creation at the asset level. KKR invests its own capital alongside its partners' capital and brings opportunities to others through its capital markets business. References to KKR's investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds. For additional information about KKR & Co. L.P. (NYSE:KKR), please visit KKR's website at www.kkr.com.
1 As of March 25, 2013. A case study detailing the benefits of the KKR and Intelligence partnership is available here.