KKR co-founders' 2012 profit jumps almost by half

NEW YORK Fri Feb 22, 2013 5:21pm EST

NEW YORK Feb 22 (Reuters) - KKR & Co LP co-founders and chief executive officers Henry Kravis and George Roberts received about $137 million and $141 million respectively in executive compensation and cash dividends in 2012, over 45 percent more than they got in 2011.

Buoyant equity and debt markets in 2012 offered buyout firms an opportunity to exit many investments, resulting in big payouts for executives who pocket lucrative performance fees known in the buyout industry as carried interest.

Kravis and Roberts, who founded KKR in 1976 with Jerome Kohlberg, had each received roughly $94 million in executive compensation and cash dividends in 2011.

According to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday, Kravis and Roberts, who together own about a quarter of the firm, received $102.1 million and $105.8 in cash from dividend payments respectively. KKR had announced a dividend of $1.22 per unit for 2012.

Kravis and Roberts also received roughly $34.7 million each, mostly in cash payments from carried interest they are entitled to as chief fund managers, according to the filing.

Kravis' payout included $300,000 in salary, fees for serving as a director on certain portfolio companies, the use of a car and driver, and personal assistant services, the filing said.

Roberts' compensation also included $300,000 in salary, a car and driver, and personal assistant services.

KKR does not disclose income from co-investments.

The New York-based private equity firm also said it paid $4.6 million in 2012 for the use of aircraft owned by Kravis and Roberts, $3.2 million of which was paid to entities collectively controlled by the two masters of finance.

Earlier this month, KKR said the fourth quarter of 2012 was its strongest yet as a publicly listed alternative asset manager, as exits from private equity investments delivered a record amount of cash for itself and its investors.