KKR sees major surge in direct lending demand in Asia

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

KKR & Co., Asia’s largest private equity investor, says the region’s entrepreneurs are seeking more direct loans as the coronavirus pandemic dries up other avenues of funding.

More opportunities to lend are emerging particularly in Southeast Asia, where some governments have fallen short in supporting companies hit by Covid-19, according to Brian Dillard, who oversees credit for the Asia Pacific. Under Dillard, KKR has lent north of $1 billion over the past year. The firm is now preparing to raise its first dedicated credit fund for the region, people familiar with the matter said, declining to be identified as discussions aren’t public.

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