Why Is Cooperman Selling KKR?

Omega Advisors chief Leon Cooperman sold a small portion of his holding in private equity giant KKR. This is probably straightforward profit taking. But he may have developed a less rosy take on KKR’s prospects.

Mr. Cooperman was a an early fan of the public stock, building up a position in 2010 after KKR transferred its common shares from Euronext Amsterdam to NYSE.

He started selling in 2012 but various vehicles he manages in combination retain a 10% or more interest in KKR. In addition to the stock, he bought KKR convertible notes.

Other funds also went for KKR shares;  the stock was popular and recovered from the 2009 low.   Still, it remains slightly below the initial public offering price.

Private equity profits are not what they use to be but KKR has other businesses. For instance last month it closed on a $412 million collateralized loan obligation. How much the new ventures will boost revenue growth is the question.

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