KKR hires healthcare veteran

Kenneth Freeman has joined the New York buyout giant as managing director, having formerly served as the head of Quest Diagnostics.

New York-based buyout giant Kohlberg Kravis Roberts has hired Kenneth Freeman as managing director.

Kenneth Freeman, managing director, KKR

Freeman most recently served as the chairman and chief executive officer of Quest Diagnostics, a leading US provider of diagnostic testing, information and services.

“Ken Freeman will be of great value to our firm and our portfolio companies on a broader scale, as he has the ability to tackle a wide range of operational and management challenges across industry lines,” said Henry Kravis, founding member of KKR, in a statement.

According to the statement, over the past few years, KKR has intensified its focus on operational value creation though initiatives that include hiring investment professionals with operating experience and moving to an industry sector focus in its deal sourcing.

Freeman led several business turnarounds prior to the spin-off of Quest. As part of a planned succession process, he stepped down from Quest’s leadership last year.

In January, KKR appointed Lord Clive Hollick as a managing director in the firm’s London office. Hollick previously served as CEO of media business information service provider United Business Media (UBM).

KKR last made headlines in March when it joined a consortium comprising Bain Capital and Vornado Realty Trust and agreed to acquire toy retailer Toys R Us for $6.6 billion (€4.9 billion).