bx tacopps or kkr infrastructure/special sits

curious on what the forum think the learning experience and exits would be in tacopps versus kkr infrastructure or special sits. if you were not very interested in vanilla pe and find the work done in all of these groups theoretically interesting, which would be the best to pursue a junior seat for? i supposed the core question is what do you think the tradeoff is between working at an older, but potentially struggling group (TO) versus newer groups at a slightly less established fund (infra/special sits at KKR).


for context went through SA recruiting a few years ago and got an offer for one of the groups listed above but chose to sign with an EB FT. i am currently preparing for associate recruitment. thanks. 

 

Based on the most helpful WSO content, the decision between BX TacOpps and KKR Infrastructure/Special Sits involves several considerations, each with its unique trade-offs and opportunities. Here's a breakdown to help guide your decision:

BX TacOpps:

  • Learning Experience: TacOpps offers exposure to a wide range of complex, opportunistic investments, including distressed assets, special situations, and unique financing solutions. The learning curve can be steep but rewarding, providing a solid foundation in assessing and managing risk in volatile or uncertain environments.
  • Exit Opportunities: Historically, TacOpps positions have led to opportunities in credit/distressed/event-driven hedge funds, and less so towards the more traditional buyout PE roles. It's a path more aligned with those interested in the credit side of the finance world.

KKR Infrastructure/Special Sits:

  • Learning Experience: KKR's Infrastructure and Special Sits groups might offer a broader exposure to both equity and debt investments across various sectors, including energy, transportation, and utilities for Infrastructure, and distressed for control situations in Special Sits. This could provide a more diversified experience, potentially touching on both traditional and alternative investment strategies.
  • Exit Opportunities: Working in these groups could open doors to a wide range of roles in infrastructure investing, renewable energy funds, distressed debt, and special situations funds. The KKR brand is strong, and the experience in these newer, growing platforms could be seen as valuable and forward-thinking.

Trade-offs:

  • Establishment vs. Innovation: BX TacOpps is a more established platform but has seen some cannibalization of its business with new launches within BX. This could mean a more stable but potentially less dynamic learning environment. On the other hand, KKR's newer Infrastructure and Special Sits groups might offer a chance to be part of growing platforms, possibly allowing for more innovation and a chance to shape the direction of these funds.
  • Focus Area: Your interest in non-vanilla PE aligns with both options, but the specific focus areas differ. TacOpps leans more towards complex credit situations, while KKR offers a mix of infrastructure (hard assets) and special situations (including distressed equity). Your preference for credit vs. equity and sector focus could guide your choice.

Conclusion:

If you're drawn to the intricacies of credit and distressed investments and value the learning experience from complex, high-stakes environments, BX TacOpps could be a compelling choice. However, if you're intrigued by the potential of infrastructure and special situations equity, and the opportunity to be part of a growing platform appeals to you, KKR's groups might offer a more aligned path.

Ultimately, consider where your interests lie, the type of environment you thrive in, and the career trajectory you envision for yourself. Both paths offer unique opportunities and challenges, and your decision should align with your long-term career goals and personal interests.

Sources: Current Thoughts on Opportunistic/Special Sits Groups (Oaktree Special Sits, BX TacOpps, Apollo Hybrid Value Fund, Brookfield Special Investments, KKR Special Sits), Special Situations Investing (BX, Apollo, Ares), https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forum/private-equity/qa-non-target-top-bucket-ssg-private-creditdirect-lending?customgpt=1

I'm an AI bot trained on the most helpful WSO content across 17+ years.
 

assuming similar levels of interest i would consider it insane to take BTO over kkr infra from a deal experience POV. Also it is pretty well established and competes with stonepeak and GIP

 

same prestige at kkr but higher quality reps and leaner teams/better learning, more flexible investment mandate (bx has cannibalized bto over the past decade leaving them with no room to invest the way they did in their early days), burgeoning growth in infra at kkr, better communication across/access to the platform (internal mobility at bx isn’t as strong and kkr has the whole “one carry pool” thing built into its ethos). if it was between bcp and kkr infra different story but unless you hate infra and just have to be in distressed, i find it difficult to see why you’d take bto here. Also cooler view from the cafeteria

 
Most Helpful

I’d personally go with KKR infra because I personally think infra is cool but also because buyout is so saturated right now, and while BX is very disciplined and didn’t get caught in the tech craze of 2021 like vista or TB, there’s still so few good assets floating around with low valuations. I think infra is the new buyout, and you’ll have better access to seniors and a strong learning experience being cross staffed with RE and buyout teams for things like data centers and telecom within infra. KKR’s main areas of growth right now are insurance and wealth management (the time to get into their infra fund was 7ish years ago). However, you’ll learn a ton and be able to leave to any SM HF with a story in hand for why you have a differentiated view on the markets, and you could also go somewhere like apollo infra where you have more chance of meaningful AUM growth (yes I know Rowan says they don’t want to be another large-cap infra fund, but they’re publicly traded so they have to play the AUM game eventually, or they’ll face activist pressure). Overall, I think KKR infra keeps a couple more doors open, but important to know BCP is generalist at the ASO and usually the Sr. Asso level, and they are really fucking good at what they do (knowing how the world works). Honestly, you’re splitting hairs so much here that culture, fit, and what kind of businesses you’re interested in matters much more (ie if you can’t stand the thought of working on southeast asian telecom deals and want to be working on software or healthcare deals, then go to BCP).

Tl;dr: KKR infra may leave a few more doors open exit wise and is a “better” place to be long term (pie will grow meaningfully), but culture, mentors at the firm, and industry interest should be the deciding factors.

 

KKR Infra is one of the best places to be in MFPE today. Very strong leadership, flexible mandate (core, value add, climate), well capitalized / on track to raise well, and you truly do a mix of a everything from corporate P2Ps to project finance to possibly climate growth. Sweaty but good culture.

 

idk how to answer that mate. they're reasonable, mature, and efficient people so there will never be shit comments at 2am. but of course, deals are massive and models are granular. if there's a bid due tomorrow, you work till its done. it's sweaty cause it's important, not sweaty for the sake of it.

 

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