NEW YORK – Kudu Investment Management, LLC (“Kudu”), a leading capital provider to asset management and wealth management firms, announced today that it has closed a $250 million investment from funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. (“Oaktree”), the global alternative investment management firm, and from White Mountains Insurance Group, Ltd. (NYSE: WTM) (“White Mountains”), the Bermuda-domiciled financial services holding company.
Based in New York City, Kudu specializes in providing capital solutions to asset managers and registered investment advisors, including generational ownership transfers, management buyouts, acquisition and growth finance, as well as liquidity for legacy partners. Kudu was launched in 2015 by Rob Jakacki, former Chief Investment Officer of Asset Management Finance and a pioneer in making minority investments in this sector, and Charlie Ruffel, former Chief Executive Officer of Asset International.
“Our partnership with Oaktree and White Mountains enables Kudu to pursue additional opportunities to invest in boutique firms in both traditional and alternative classes. We identify firms with focused capabilities and demonstrated value-added for their clients, where we can apply the flexible capital solutions and management alignment strategy that are the hallmark of our firm,” said Rob Jakacki, CEO of Kudu.
“Boutique asset managers are poised to benefit from many of the recent shifts in the asset management industry, including a move towards principal-owned firms that offer a sustainable value proposition,” said Charlie Ruffel, Managing Partner of Kudu. “Our opportunity is to partner with the best of those boutiques and allow them to accelerate their growth.”
Brian Laibow, Managing Director at Oaktree, said, “We’re looking forward to partnering with Kudu as they enter into their new era of growth. We appreciate and support Kudu’s vision of investing in mid-size asset managers through minority investment constructs that allow firms to retain the independence and control that served as the foundation for their past successes, while benefiting from the new capital and expertise that Kudu brings.”
Manning Rountree, Chief Executive Officer of White Mountains, added, “We are delighted to back Rob, Charlie and the Kudu team, whose experience and capabilities are first rate, and to invest alongside Oaktree. We look forward to a fruitful partnership.”
Oaktree is a leader among global investment managers specializing in alternative investments, with $100 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2017. The firm emphasizes an opportunistic, value-oriented and risk-controlled approach to investments in distressed debt, corporate debt (including high yield debt and senior loans), control investing, convertible securities, real estate and listed equities. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the firm has over 900 employees and offices in 18 cities worldwide. For additional information, please visit Oaktree’s website at http://www.oaktreecapital.com/.
About White Mountains
White Mountains is a Bermuda-domiciled financial services holding company traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the Bermuda Stock Exchange under the symbol WTM. Additional financial information and other items of interest are available at the Company’s web site located at www.whitemountains.com.