Cerberus’ Larsen joins Moelis & Co.(2)

Fresh off the $1.8 billion first close of its debut fund, Ken Moelis’ new firm has lured Kurt Larsen away from Cerberus.

Newly opened Moelis & Company has hired Cerberus Capital Management’s Kurt Larsen to head its private equity business. The firm held a first close on $1.8 billion (€1.3 billion) for its debut fund this September.

Larsen has been a managing director at Cerberus since 2003. There he focussed on middle-market private equity and subordinated debt investments. Before joining Cerberus, Larsen was a managing partner at Black Diamond Capital Partners, an insurance industry-focussed firm he founded in 1997. Prior to founding Black Diamond he was a principal at middle market private equity firm Aurora Capital Group.

Larsen is not the first high-profile executive to join the Moelis & Co. team. The firm's founder Ken Moelis was himself head of investment banking at UBS. When he left UBS this March a handful of senior bankers followed him, including UBS media banker Navid Mahmoodzadegan and joint head of global mergers and acquisitions Jeff Raich.

The firm has not yet announced any deals, but said that it will primarily co-invest with other firms, rather than leading deals. Its debut fund is agnostic regarding sector and deal size.