Riverside hires Blackstone exec as president

Jamie Kiggen has been named The Riverside Company’s first president. He previously worked in both private equity and venture capital at The Blackstone Group.

The Riverside Company has hired former senior managing director at The Blackstone Group Jamie Kiggen as president of the firm.

Kiggen is Riverside’s first president, though the firm has been “mulling over” the decision to hire a president for a number of years, Riverside co-chief executive officer Stewart Kohl said in a statement. At Riverside, Kiggen will be responsible for leading new product development, supporting the fundraising and investor relations teams and providing investment expertise on select transactions. He will be based in the firm’s New York office.

Kiggen joined Blackstone in 2008 and headed up the firm’s cleantech venture capital effort while also working for Blackstone’s private equity group in a senior technology investment role. Prior to joining Blackstone, he started the venture capital business at Alliance Bernstein, which he joined in 2005. He was previously the director of technology research at former investment bank DLJ.

“I’ve been focused on technology broadly for my entire career but it’s really been a focus on growth companies and emerging companies,” Kiggen told Private Equity International. “That was a big part of the draw of the role at Riverside, getting to a platform that’s focused on smaller companies that have tremendous growth potential. There are still a lot of promising investments in every geography that we’re operating in and some that we’re not operating in yet but may be operating in the future.”

Despite Kiggen’s extensive experience in venture capital, he does not consider venture to be a “natural extension of what Riverside is good at today”, he said.

“We’ll continue to think strategically about adjacent businesses that may make sense over time for Riverside to enter into, but I don’t think venture capital will be high on the list anytime soon.”

Riverside has been adding staff in a number of the firm’s departments recently. Last month, the firm hired Jennifer Boyce, former partner at law firm Jones Day, as Riverside’s chief compliance officer; Scott Martin, former head of operations at KPMG, as a partner, and former partner of operations at Steve Stubitz as an operating partner.

Also in April, Riverside hired former Mercury Capital Advisors partner Erick Bronner to lead the firm’s investor relations department.