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Veteran banker KV Kamath appointed as senior advisor for KKR India

Global investment firm KKR today announced the appointment of K.V. Kamath as a Senior Advisor to KKR India. His appointment is effective immediately.

Mr. Kamath is recognized as one of the pioneers of India’s modern financial services sector, and brings to KKR more than five decades of experience building and leading large Indian businesses. Most recently, Mr. Kamath served as the first President of the New Development Bank, a multilateral development bank established by the BRICS nations, from its founding in 2015 until 2020. 

Prior to that, he was Chairman of ICICI Bank and Infosys Limited, two of India’s leading companies. In October 2021, he was appointed the Chairperson of India’s newly established National Bank for Financing Infrastructure and Development, which was created to support the development of long-term infrastructure financing in the country.

KV Kamath commented, “KKR has consistently demonstrated its strong commitment to India, and the firm today stands out as one of the highest-caliber investors in innovative, market-leading companies in the country and worldwide. I am excited by the opportunity to work alongside Gaurav and the broader KKR team and welcome the chance to leverage my experience to help Indian businesses elevate and meet their full potential.”

KV Kamath began his career in ICICI’s Project Finance division in 1971. While at the company, he led the establishment of several of ICICI’s new businesses and served in a range of general management positions. Mr. Kamath then joined the Asian Development Bank in Manila in 1988. He returned to India in 1996 when he was appointed Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer at ICICI, which later merged with ICICI Bank.

Gaurav Trehan, Partner & CEO of KKR India, said, “We are pleased to welcome K.V. as a senior advisor to our team in India, and are excited to learn from his terrific insights as we continue to invest in the growth of India. K.V. has a truly outstanding track record of working with different stakeholders while building world-class businesses. He joins at an exciting time for KKR in India, and I am confident of the value that he will bring to our franchise and businesses.”

Among the ways KKR looks to add value to its portfolio companies is through access to its substantial network and the expertise of industry specialists, including KKR’s senior advisors. Mr. Kamath’s appointment marks the latest milestone for KKR in India, where KKR has committed approximately US$7 billion of equity in asset classes that include private equity and infrastructure. In 2021, the firm has made several investments in the country, including in Vini Cosmetics, a leading branded personal care and beauty products company; Lenskart, a leading omni-channel eyewear retailer; Five Star, a lender to small businesses; and a portfolio of road assets.

In 2008, Mr. Kamath received the Padma Bhushan Award, one of India’s highest civilian honors. He has additionally served as the President of leading industry association the Confederation of Indian Industry, and was a Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos. Mr. Kamath has been recognized as one of India’s most distinguished business leaders by global and Indian media. He is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, and additionally holds a degree in engineering.

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