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Kelso Fund IX Exits Investment in Sirius Computer Solutions

Kelso is pleased to announce that on July 1, 2019 we closed the sale of Sirius Computer Solutions to Clayton, Dubilier and Rice.

Sirius is a leading provider of data center-focused IT services. With $3.5 billion in annual gross sales, the Company provides world-class solutions from proven technologies helping clients transform their business by securing, managing and optimizing their IT operations. Sirius has over 2,700 employees, multiple offices across the U.S., and a team of experts with more than 5,000 professional and technical certifications.

Kelso was selected as management’s partner of choice in a proprietary transaction. The strong relationship with management, which was developed over three years, was a key factor in Kelso’s ability to acquire Sirius for a purchase multiple that reflected a discount to public and private comparables at the time.  Kelso and management executed on multiple levers for value creation, completing four acquisitions, executing multiple operational initiatives and generating meaningful free cash flow.

July 1, 2019Read More

Kelso Fund X Announces Investment in J.S. Held

Kelso is pleased to announce that on July 1, 2019, we acquired J.S. Held.

J.S. Held is a leading specialty consulting firm with a focus on the insurance claims management sector. The company provides insurance carriers and loss adjusters with specific domain expertise that leads to more accurate claim outcomes. J.S. Held offers specialized services across six key verticals including building consulting, forensic architecture and engineering, environmental health and safety, forensic accounting, surety and construction advisory.

J.S. Held is a clear market leader that benefits from several sources of differentiation. The company has achieved impressive growth historically and is well positioned to capitalize on significant future organic and inorganic growth opportunities.

Kelso has led an active and focused sourcing effort in the insurance services industry for several years. Within the industry, Kelso and KSN member Pat McLaughlin identified claims management as a priority sector and J.S. Held as a priority investment opportunity. Through proactive outreach, we were introduced to J.S. Held CEO Jon Held and subsequently maintained an active dialogue regarding our significant interest in acquiring the company. Kelso was chosen as management’s partner to acquire J.S. Held outside of a broad auction process. Kelso’s investment thesis on the claims management sector, established relationship with management, value creation track record in insurance

July 1, 2019Read More

Kelso Fund IX Exits Investment in SouthernCarlson

Kelso is pleased to announce that on June 3, 2019 we closed the sale of SouthernCarlson to Kyocera Corporation

SouthernCarlson is a leading distributor of fastening and packaging products and supplies across 36 states, Canada and Mexico. SouthernCarlson serves contractors, dealers, retailers and manufacturers in construction and industrial end markets through its network of 150+ branch locations and 22 distribution centers.

Following Kelso’s investment in US LBM, the deal team identified SouthernCarlson as a similar best-in-class distribution business with a strategy to build a national footprint via acquisitions. Kelso developed a dialogue with the prior owners of SouthernCarlson and expressed an interest in acquiring the Company in a privately negotiated transaction. Kelso’s experience within the building products distribution sector and with roll-up strategies enhanced diligence and provided unique insight into the market, resulting in a proprietary transaction outside of a process at an attractive purchase price. Kelso and management executed on an agreed upon strategic value creation plan, completing eight acquisitions, making key leadership additions and continuing to grow the business organically with the support of strong underlying industry fundamentals.

June 3, 2019Read More

Kelso Fund VIII Exits Investment in Tallgrass Energy

Leawood, Kan. & New York -- (Business Wire - Jan 31, 2019) --

Tallgrass Energy, LP (NYSE: TGE) and Blackstone (NYSE: BX) today announced that affiliates of Blackstone Infrastructure Partners (“BIP”) have entered into a definitive agreement with affiliates of Kelso & Co., The Energy & Minerals Group, and Tallgrass KC, LLC, an entity owned by certain members of TGE’s management, to acquire 100% of the membership interests in TGE’s general partner, as well as an approximately 44% economic interest in Tallgrass, for total cash consideration of approximately $3.3 billion. Affiliates of GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, will be a minority investor in the transaction.

February 5, 2019Read More

Kelso Fund IX Exits Investment in Oasis Outsourcing

Kelso is pleased to announce that on December 21, 2018, Oasis Outsourcing closed the transaction to sell the Company to Paychex, Inc. Oasis is the largest privately held Professional Employer Organization in the U.S., serving small-and-medium sized businesses in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Oasis primarily provides full-service payroll administration, employee benefits plan management, workers' comp insurance, and risk management, while also offering other ancillary services such as employee lifecycle management. The Company serves over 8,400 clients and over 265,000 Worksite Employees across a wide range of industries.

December 21, 2018Read More

Kelso Fund IX Exits Investment in Ajax Resources

Kelso is pleased to announce that on October 31, 2018, Ajax Resources closed the sale of substantially all of its assets to Diamondback Energy. Ajax is an exploration and production company focusing on oil and gas development in the Permian Basin.  The Company was formed in 2015 specifically to acquire certain Permian assets from W&T Offshore.  Ajax operates across ~25,500 acres in Martin, Andrews, Dawson, and Gaines counties in the Northern Midland Basin.                

Kelso, in conjunction with KSN member Forrest Wylie, developed a partnership solution for a motivated seller that resulted in an attractive valuation in a depressed oil price environment. Since Kelso’s initial investment in October 2015, the team successfully realized numerous key elements of our operationally-focused investment thesis – validation of core geology across the acreage position, delineation of “stacked pay” potential and improved drilling and completion efficiencies – all of which culminated in a transaction to sell the business to a best-in-class Permian Basin operator at a premium multiple. Kelso and the Ajax management team expect to continue to pursue new acquisition opportunities together following the closing of the transaction.            

November 6, 2018Read More

Kelso Fund X Announces Investment in Newport Group

Kelso is pleased to announce that on September 13, 2018 we acquired Newport Group.  

Newport is one of the largest independent providers of retirement services in the U.S., with over one million employee participants and more than $160 billion in assets under administration. The company’s services include retirement plan recordkeeping and administration, insurance distribution, and consulting services related to retirement plans.

Kelso has led an active and focused sourcing effort in the retirement services industry for several years, including first meeting Newport CEO Greg Tschider in 2015. We subsequently maintained an active dialogue regarding our interest in acquiring Newport given our investment thesis on the retirement services industry and our perspective that Newport is well-positioned within its markets. Kelso was chosen as management’s partner to acquire Newport in a negotiated transaction. Kelso’s investment thesis on the retirement services industry, familiarity with Newport, value creation track record in financial services, and reputation as a partner of choice were differentiators in securing the transaction. Kelso leveraged several relationships in its KSN network as part of due diligence, which enabled us to develop an informed perspective and work efficiently to reach a definitive agreement with the sellers.

September 13, 2018Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Zenith Energy U.S.’s Acquisition of Arc Logistics

Zenith Energy U.S., L.P. (“Zenith”) today announced the completion of the previously-announced acquisition of Arc Logistics Partners LP (“Arc Logistics”) and its general partner, Arc Logistics LLC. Zenith is a U.S. midstream terminal company formed by the management and certain owners of Zenith Energy, L.P. (“Zenith International”). As a result of the transaction, Arc Logistics is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Zenith and Zenith U.S. GP, LLC (together, “Zenith U.S.”).  Zenith U.S. has received a line of equity of up to $625 million led by Warburg Pincus and Kelso, alongside management and other investors. A portion of the line of equity is being used to finance the acquisition of Arc Logistics.

“We are very pleased to have successfully completed the acquisition of Arc Logistics, which gives us a strong foothold into the U.S. terminaling market with 21 terminals in 12 states, providing critical services to a broad range of customers in key markets across the country,” said Jeff Armstrong, Chief Executive Officer of Zenith. “We look forward to welcoming the employees of Arc to Zenith U.S. and benefitting from our shared industry expertise, best-in-class services and a global footprint to serve our combined customer base. We are also pleased to continue our partnership with Warburg Pincus and welcome Kelso as a new partner in this venture.”

March 2, 2018Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Sirius’ Acquisition of Forsythe

Kelso is pleased to announce that on September 27, 2017, Sirius Computer Solutions, Inc. (“Sirius”) reached a definitive agreement to acquire Forsythe Technology, Inc. ("Forsythe").  Forsythe is a leading enterprise IT solutions provider.  Forsythe offers a robust security solutions portfolio, along with data center, hosting and security services designed to help clients become more agile, modernize their IT, and secure their data and brands.  The acquisition further solidifies Sirius as the industry leader in IT solutions.  Forsythe represents an attractive opportunity for Sirius to gain additional scale, improve OEM diversification, expand Sirius’ product and services offering, and gain an extensive blue-chip customer base.  Together, Sirius and Forsythe will employ over 3,000 employees in more than 70 offices nationwide, and have generated over $3 billion of combined revenue in the last twelve months.  We are excited about adding Forsythe to further expand Sirius’ national scale and services offering. 

October 6, 2017Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Agreement to Acquire Plan B

Kelso is pleased to announce that on September 18, 2017, through an investment in Foundation Consumer Healthcare (“Foundation”), we signed a definitive agreement to purchase the assets of Plan B One-Step (“Plan B”) from Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (“Teva”). As part of the transaction, Kelso partnered with Juggernaut Capital Partners (“Juggernaut”), the current owner of Foundation. Plan B is the market leading emergency contraceptive (“EC”) brand and the #1 overall selling OTC SKU in the U.S. Since receiving FDA approval in 1999 and full OTC approval (in aisle with no age restriction) in 2013, Plan B has grown to be synonymous with the EC category, selling ~4 million units annually at a retail price of ~$49. As part of the transaction, Foundation acquired Teva’s Value Brands (Take Action, Aftera and Next Choice). The Value Brands along with Plan B (collectively, the “Plan B Franchise”) represent > 90% market share in the EC category.

September 25, 2017Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Eagle’s Acquisition of Popcorn Indiana

Kelso is pleased to announce that on August 28, 2017, Eagle Foods (“Eagle”) completed the acquisition of Dale & Thomas Popcorn, LLC and Subsidiaries ("Popcorn Indiana").  Popcorn Indiana is one of the leading brands in the ready-to-eat ("RTE") popcorn category and increases Eagle's scale and importance in the high growth RTE popcorn category. Similar to G.H. Cretors, Popcorn Indiana has a rich brand heritage, named after the town of Popcorn, Indiana, and is one of the most recognizable brands in the category. Strategically, Popcorn Indiana complements Eagle's G.H. Cretors brand well and adds considerable distribution and ACV in a number of grocery channels where G.H. Cretors does not currently have a presence. From a product perspective, Popcorn Indiana also complements G.H. Cretors with core SKUs in Kettle and White Cheddar which add to the strong G.H. Cretors offering of The Mix, a 50/50 caramel & cheese product. The Eagle management team's expertise in the salty snack category will also be augmented by the retention of high quality Popcorn Indiana executives. We are excited about adding Popcorn Indiana to Eagle and continuing to grow the Eagle platform organically and through strategic acquisitions.

September 5, 2017Read More

Harbor Community Bank Signs Agreement to Merge with CenterState Banks, Inc.

Kelso is pleased to announce that on August 14, 2017, Harbor Community Bank ("Harbor") signed a definitive agreement to merge with CenterState Banks, Inc.

August 18, 2017Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Investment in Oasis Outsourcing Holdings

Kelso is pleased to announce that on June 30, 2017, we closed an investment in Oasis Outsourcing Holdings, Inc. (“Oasis” or the “Company”) concurrent with the Company’s acquisition of Diversified Human Resources, Inc. (“DHR”) and debt refinancing.

July 12, 2017Read More

Kelso Announces Strong Follow-on Acquisition Activity Across the Fund IX Portfolio

Kelso has closed a number of follow-on acquisitions throughout our Fund IX portfolio since the Firm began investing in August 2015. A key component to the growth strategy behind many of our Fund IX portfolio companies is making accretive follow-on acquisitions, a significant lever for additional value creation. In the first 20 months of investing, our portfolio companies have made 40 follow-on acquisitions in aggregate, adding approximately $135 million in incremental EBITDA. Kelso believes there is still  a significant pipeline of attractive and actionable follow-on opportunities remaining for Fund IX. Below are a few highlights:

April 18, 2017Read More

Kelso Fund VIII Exits Investment in Sentinel Data Centers

Sentinel Data Centers Completes Sale of Two Facilities to CyrusOne

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - March 01, 2017) - Sentinel Data Centers today confirmed that it has completed its previously announced $490 million sale of two facilities to CyrusOne Inc. The two multi-tenant data centers included in the transaction are located in Somerset, NJ and Durham, NC. Sentinel will retain the remainder of its portfolio, which includes single-tenant data centers in Memphis, Tennessee and Rockland County, New York as well as additional minority investments in the sector.

In a joint statement, Co-Founders and Co-CEOs Todd Aaron and Josh Rabina said, "We are grateful for the top notch partners, investors, employees and customers who have contributed so significantly to our success over the past 15 years since we started Sentinel. We continue to seek new opportunities as the industry evolves and look forward to both furthering these relationships and building new ones for years to come."

In addition to its founders, major Sentinel investors include Kelso & Company and Russo Development. Hank Mannix of Kelso said, "Josh and Todd are outstanding executives who have developed best-in-class assets distinguished by industry leading reliability and service. We are thrilled to have shared such a successful partnership with them during the past six years and look forward to continuing our relationship in the future."

March 1, 2017Read More

Premia Raises $510 million In Initial Capital From Leading Investors To Target Global Property & Casualty Runoff Opportunities

- Bill O’Farrell to Lead Company

- Kelso & Company and Arch Capital are Founding Investors

HAMILTON, Bermuda--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Premia Holdings Ltd. (“Premia” or “the Company”), a newly-formed property & casualty (“P&C”) insurance and reinsurance group focused on providing runoff solutions, announced today that it has completed a $510 million initial capital raise. The formation of Premia represents one of the largest capital raises ever focused on the P&C runoff market and immediately establishes Bermuda-based Premia as a significant market participant.

Premia was founded and will be led by reinsurance industry veteran Bill O’Farrell, who will serve as Chief Executive Officer. The founding investors include Kelso & Company (“Kelso”), a leading private equity firm, its co-investors and an affiliate of Arch Capital Group Ltd. (“Arch”), a leading insurance and reinsurance group. In addition to its equity investment, Arch will serve as a key strategic reinsurance partner, allowing Premia to compete on the largest global runoff transactions. The remainder of the capital comes from other institutional investors, the Premia management team and senior members of Arch.

January 9, 2017Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Eagle’s Acquisition of Cornfields, Inc.

Kelso is pleased to announce that on August 5, 2016, Eagle Family Foods Group LLC (“Eagle”) signed a definitive agreement to acquire Cornfields, Inc. (“Cornfields” or the “Company”). Cornfields will be owned 100% by Eagle at closing.

Cornfields is a family-owned manufacturer of Ready-to-Eat (“RTE”) branded and private label popcorn and other snacks. The Company’s G.H. Cretors brand is a unique-tasting, RTE popcorn brand that was launched in 2009 and accounts for 52% of total Company net sales. Eagle and Kelso were selected as the acquirer of choice as a strategic partner who could help grow Cornfields into a leading player in the RTE popcorn category and be good stewards of the G.H. Cretors brand and the Cretors family name.

August 5, 2016Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Agreement to Acquire Physicians Endoscopy

Kelso is pleased to announce that on June 30, 2016, we signed a definitive agreement to acquire Physicians Endoscopy (“PE” or the “Company”), a developer and operator of Gastroenterology ("GI") focused Ambulatory Surgery Centers ("ASCs").

Physicians Endoscopy is a developer, owner and operator of single-specialty GI ASCs. The Company has a diverse footprint of 42 ASCs nationwide, with significant density in the Northeast and Midwest. PE invests in ASCs as both a majority and minority owner alongside physician and hospital partners.

June 30, 2016Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Agreement to Acquire SouthernCarlson

Kelso is pleased to announce that on June 30, 2016, we signed a definitive agreement to acquire Fastener Holdings, Inc. (“SouthernCarlson” or the “Company”).

SouthernCarlson is a leading national distributor of fastening and packaging products and supplies across 34 states. The Company serves contractors, dealers, retailers and manufacturers in construction and industrial end markets through its network of 140 retail locations and 15 distribution centers. SouthernCarlson combines industry-leading product availability and expertise with a value-added services offering that includes tool repair services, a tool loan program, national account management and dealer category management. The Company has completed seven acquisitions since January 2013 as part of a roll-up strategy to create the first fastener distribution business with national scale.

June 30, 2016Read More

Kelso Announces the Final Closing of Fund IX

On May 30, 2016, Kelso held a final closing on Fund IX, with $2.56 billion in commitments. The Kelso employees and the Kelso Specialist Network together committed $625 million. The Fund will generally invest in middle-market buyouts in North America.

May 30, 2016Read More

Kelso Fund VIII Completes Sale of Helios

Kelso is pleased to announce that on January 14, 2016, we completed the sale of Helios to OptumRx, Inc., a subsidiary of UnitedHealthcare. Helios provides best-in-class management of pharmacy benefits, durable medical equipment, home health care, and other ancillary services for workers’ compensation and auto no-fault insurance companies.

Kelso invested in Helios in October 2013 to fund the merger of Progressive Solutions and PMSI, creating the industry-leading workers’ compensation pharmacy benefit manager (“PBM”). Kelso’s healthcare services team had identified pharmacy benefit management as an attractive investment opportunity in early 2013, with a focus on workers’ compensation due to the enhanced margin profile and value-add capabilities of businesses operating in the sector. Kelso proactively approached Progressive Solutions to form a partnership and pursue an acquisition of PMSI as part of an auction process. Synergies generated by the transaction allowed Kelso and Progressive to win a competitive auction while investing in the combined business at an attractive pro forma purchase multiple.

January 14, 2016Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Agreement to Acquire Eagle Family Foods, Inc.

Kelso is pleased to announce that on November 2, 2015, we signed a definitive agreement to purchase the assets of Eagle Family Foods, Inc. (“Eagle” or the “Company”) from The J.M. Smucker Company (“Smucker”).

Eagle is a leading domestic manufacturer of sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk products. Eagle operates in two stable and growing categories with #1 branded market share in sweetened condensed milk and #2 branded share in evaporated milk, as well as #1 private label market share in each category. The Company’s products are key ingredients in a diverse set of end products with low substitution risk due to the critical ingredient nature of its products. Eagle produces 100% of its products at two low-cost manufacturing facilities.

November 2, 2015Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Agreement to Acquire Risk Strategies Company

Kelso is pleased to announce that on October 7, 2015, we signed an agreement to acquire Risk Strategies Company (“RSC” or the “Company”). Management and other employees are rolling ~50% of their proceeds and will own ~20% of the pro forma equity.

RSC is a leading national insurance brokerage firm, focused on select specialty practices serving middle/upper-middle commercial clients and high net worth individuals. Headquartered in Boston, MA, the Company has 17 offices across the U.S. and ~500 employees. RSC has a differentiated business model focused largely on more complex specialty practices, including healthcare, professional liability, entertainment and fine arts. Additionally, the Company is well diversified across all elements of its business (e.g., specialty product lines, clients, carriers, producers, and geographic footprint).

October 7, 2015Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Agreement to Acquire Sirius Computer Solutions

Kelso is pleased to announce that on September 1, 2015, we signed a definitive agreement to acquire Sirius Computer Solutions (“Sirius” or the “Company”). The Company’s management team is rolling a significant portion of their pre-tax proceeds and will remain significant investors in the Company.

Sirius is a leading provider of data center-focused technology integration services, including product provisioning, design and implementation. Sirius combines a broad suite of hardware and software product offerings with value-added services, including systems management, cloud computing, managed services and IT asset management. The Company serves enterprise customers and partners with leading technology OEMs, including IBM, Cisco, Dell, EMC, Hitachi, HP Lenovo, NetApp, VMware and Nutanix.

September 1, 2015Read More

Kelso Fund IX Announces Agreement to Acquire Ajax Resources, LLC

Kelso is pleased to announce that on August 31, 2015, Ajax Resources, LLC (“Ajax” or the “Company”) and affiliates of Kelso & Company (“Kelso”) signed a definitive agreement to acquire the Permian Basin assets of W&T Offshore, Inc. (“W&T”).

Ajax is a newly-formed oil and gas company established to acquire W&T's Permian Basin assets. Ajax will be led by Executive Chairman Forrest Wylie. Mr. Wylie has 26 years of experience in the energy sector working for public E&P, offshore drilling, energy marketing and midstream businesses, and has served as CEO, Chairman or Board Member for multiple Kelso portfolio companies over the past 12 years. Mr. Wylie is a member of the Kelso Specialist Network. Ajax represents Kelso’s 10th energy transaction with Mr. Wylie.

August 31, 2015Read More

Kelso Fund IX Closes Acquisition of US LBM Holdings, LLC

Kelso is pleased to announce that on August 20, 2015, we closed the acquisition of US LBM Holdings, LLC (“US LBM” or the “Company”). BlackEagle Partners and the Company’s management team will remain investors in the Company.

US LBM is a leading building products distributor across 22 states with over 160 locations. It serves builders, remodelers and specialty contractors throughout the United States. US LBM is one of the fastest growing companies in the industry. The US LBM model is to serve as a platform for further investments and acquisitions in the pro dealer market—preferably in partnership with current ownership/management. US LBM encourages those individual businesses to operate as local divisions while enjoying the capital and other resources of a much larger national organization.

August 20, 2015Read More

Kelso Fund VIII Announces Initial Public Offering of Tallgrass Energy Partners GP, LP

Kelso is pleased to announce the pricing of the initial public offering of Tallgrass Energy Partners GP, LP (“TEGP”; NYSE: TEGP) on May 6, 2015. TEGP, which owns the general partner of Tallgrass Energy Partners, LP (“TEP”; NYSE: TEP) and 20 million common units of TEP, sold 47,725,000 Class A shares at $29.00 per share, raising $1.4 billion of gross proceeds. The Class A shares began trading on the New York Stock Exchange on May 7th and closed their first day of trading at $31.75 per share, an increase of 9.5% above the IPO price.

Kelso initially invested in Tallgrass in September 2012 in conjunction with the acquisition of certain midstream assets from Kinder Morgan as part of an FTC-mandated divestiture related to Kinder Morgan’s acquisition of El Paso Corporation. Kelso leveraged its internal midstream expertise and the expertise of its KSN members Forrest Wylie and Scott Hobbs in identifying and pursuing the assets. During this process, Kelso was introduced to David Dehaemers and his team. David (the second employee at Kinder Morgan) had deep midstream experience and had assembled an impressive team of midstream executives and developed a strategy around the assets, notably the Rex and Pony Express pipelines.

May 6, 2015Read More

Kelso Fund VIII Completes Sale of Cronos

Kelso is pleased to announce that on January 20, 2015, we completed the sale of Cronos Ltd. (“Cronos”) to entities affiliated with Bohai Leasing Co., Ltd. (“Bohai Leasing”), a Chinese leasing conglomerate. Cronos is one of the world’s leading lessors of intermodal shipping containers with one of the youngest and most diversified fleets in the container leasing sector.

During Kelso's ownership, Cronos’s accomplishments included:

  • More than doubling EBIT and the net book value of revenue-generating assets through investment in the continued diversification of Cronos’s asset base
  • Augmenting organizational talent across all levels to create a more scalable platform
  • Developing a more sophisticated and competitive funding model than that which existed previously

January 20, 2015Read More