KKR taps $1.3bn Impact Fund for Spanish online job training, exam prep provider MasterD

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Global private equity giant KKR has bought a majority stake in Spanish vocational training business MasterD.

The company provides more than 280 courses to over 50,000 learners annually in Spain and Portugal through its online virtual learning platform.

Courses cover vocational training and professional certifications for the private sector and preparation for examinations focused on the public sector across a range of departments.

The investment in MasterD is the second in Europe from the $1.3bn KKR Global Impact fund, following its investment in the UK recycling and responsible waste management company Viridor.

Stanislas de Joussineau, director at KKR and head of Global Impact in EMEA, said, “MasterD is helping address a critical societal challenge in improving employability and skills, which aligns very strongly with the objectives of KKR’s strategy around impact investing.

“The outcomes delivered for learners and the improvement in their prospects are testament to the quality of the courses and the platform that the founder and management have built.

“We are very excited to work alongside a strong management team to accelerate the growth of MasterD and the feedback we gather will allow us to track and measure the benefits delivered for the students and on employment.”

KKR said the market for professional and public sector examinations and skills training has seen strong growth over the past few years in response to rising demand for training and professional qualifications in Spain, as the country seeks to address the challenges of unemployment and a skills gap, particularly among young people.

Re-skilling and professional education are key policy priorities, both for graduates who may lack technical qualifications and for non-graduates who are seeking a clearer path towards employment, it added.

KKR has invested more than $5bn in Spain since 2010 across private equity, infrastructure and other asset classes, with investments including Alvic Group, PortAventura, Telxius and X-Elio.

The MasterD deal follows KKR’s investment last year in Burning Glass, a labour market analytics provider which analyses supply and demand in the job market to inform hiring patterns and skills development.

KKR’s Impact fund is targeting standard private equity risk-adjusted returns by investing in companies in the lower mid-market that contribute measurable progress toward one or more of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

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