Frankfurt, Germany, 12 January 2023 – KKR, a leading global investment firm, has appointed Lea-Sophie Cramer as an Industry Advisor to KKR’s Private Equity team, further strengthening KKR’s expertise in the European e-commerce and broader technology sector. In her role, Lea will leverage her extensive expertise as an entrepreneur to advise KKR on investment opportunities and further support selected portfolio companies with international growth strategies.
Lea is a founder, investor and one of the most prominent voices for entrepreneurship and startup culture in Germany. After leading Groupon in Asia, Lea co-founded Amorelie in 2013. Today Amorelie is a leading e-commerce player for peoples’ love life and has contributed to repositioning and growing an entire industry. Eventually Amorelie was sold to ProSiebenSat.1 and Lea left her position as CEO of the company in 2019.
Lea is an active Business Angel and VC-fund Investor and a leading advocate for female leadership and entrepreneurship. In 2022 she founded the “10-More-In” academy with modern leadership programs for women.Lea previously served as Board member of Amorelie and Conrad Electronic and is currently an active Board member of the Swiss photo products company, Ifolor Group.
In her role as Industry Advisor to KKR, Lea will join the Board of Directors of KKR portfolio company Wella Company, one of the world’s fastest-growing beauty businesses. As a Non-Executive Board Director she will leverage her expertise in developing e-commerce solutions, growing sustainable and innovative consumer and professional brands and supporting the organization on accelerating its overall growth agenda. She will also leverage her deep insights into the DACH consumer market, one of the largest and most relevant markets for Wella Company. Over the last two years since KKR assumed a majority interest of Wella Company, the professional and retail hair, nail and digital beauty tech leader has significantly accelerated its global market share while also investing in making sustainability, diversity, equity and inclusion and social impact central to its mission. Wella Company recently published its first ESG Manifesto as a public pronouncement of its long-term impact plan for People, Planet and Products including reducing its carbon impact, engaging in sustainable manufacturing operations, and innovating its products for clean and green formulation.
Lea-Sophie Cramer, Industry Advisor for KKR, said: “For the past 15 years, I dedicated my energy to building and investing in innovative customer-centric, impact-driven brands in Germanys’ Tech and Start-Up scene. KKR invests in strategic partnerships with founders, entrepreneurs and management teams and supports their companies in realizing their full potential. In this regard, I am very excited to bring in my expertise as an Industry Advisor to KKR and its portfolio companies. It is a great opportunity to be joining the Board of Wella Company and its iconic brand portfolio. I am impressed by the company’s journey under the leadership of CEO Annie Young-Scrivner and look forward to working with her and the entire team.”
Philipp Freise, Partner and Co-Head of European Private Equity at KKR, commented: “We are thrilled to welcome Lea to our team. With her impressive track record as an entrepreneur and her status as a role model for founders across Europe, she brings a wealth of experience to our firm, particularly in the technology sector where we continue to accelerate our activities globally. Lea has repeatedly demonstrated her ability to lead diverse teams and her strong dedication to innovate. We look forward to benefiting from her knowledge as we continue to invest in companies that are driving the digital transformation.”
Laura Schröder, Director at KKR, said: “Lea is a natural fit for an Industry Advisor role at KKR as she compliments our firm’s efforts to accelerate innovation, with her unique entrepreneurial mindset, excellent leadership skills and brand-building expertise. Through her continued advocacy for female entrepreneurship and modern leadership, she has rightfully become one of the leading voices for startups and businesses in Germany.”
KKR is one of the most active investors focused on building leading global technology enterprises, with global tech investments including investments in Cegid, Exact Software, Darktrace, Onestream and Box among others. Across the DACH region, KKR has been investing on the ground for over 20 years primarily through strategic partnership deals such as in Axel Springer, Contabo, Körber’s supply chain business, Scout24 Switzerland and SoftwareOne.
KKR is a leading global investment firm that offers alternative asset management as well as capital markets and insurance solutions. KKR aims to generate attractive investment returns by following a patient and disciplined investment approach, employing world-class people and supporting growth in its portfolio companies and communities. KKR sponsors investment funds that invest in private equity, credit and real assets and has strategic partners that manage hedge funds. KKR’s insurance subsidiaries offer retirement, life and reinsurance products under the management of Global Atlantic Financial Group. References to KKR’s investments may include the activities of its sponsored funds and insurance subsidiaries. For additional information about KKR & Co. Inc. (NYSE: KKR), please visit KKR’s website at www.kkr.com and on Twitter @KKR_Co.
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