Kelso, a New York City-based private equity firm, has been investing in private equity since 1980 and has invested more than $12 Billion of equity capital. Louis Kelso, one of the Founders of the firm and the inventor of the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (or ESOP), inspired one of the main principles of the firm: 100% of the employees are allowed to invest in Kelso’s transactions, so they all have a stake in the profits and success of the company.
I no longer have to double and triple check the excel spreadsheets I receive from my team
Howard Matlin, CFO, Kelso
With all of Kelso’s employees investing in their current 30+ portfolio investments and partnerships, the company needed to provide its employees with the ability to monitor their investment allocations. Kelso’s CFO Howard Matlin would received investment reports managed by different employees that needed to be consolidated in order to present the full picture to investors These excel spreadsheets were completed in a way that presented the underlying economics of the specific investment or partnership resulting in different formats, which made it difficult and time consuming to create a consolidated reports.
The system they used to combine the reports was very complex and caused severe bottlenecks. The information overload meant that employees could not get a clear real-time picture of their allocation. They would have to wait for the entire consolidation process to be finalized which was done only on a semi-annual basis. Matlin’s team’s intricate work also included period over period financial comparisons, where his team they had to manually cross check the excel reports, as well as track any changes made to the spreadsheets in a zero-error environment.
The process was too cumbersome, so we were not able to provide timely information. I needed a way to accelerate our efforts.
With DataRails, we were able to significantly accelerate our data-intensive reporting process. All the spreadsheets, regardless of format, are combined seamlessly, saving vast amounts of time, effort and headache. The bottleneck is eliminated since DataRails is easy for the accounting team to learn and use themselves.
And by having all the data in a single, unified system, Matlin has gained confidence and control over the data, and can see the full picture by using DataRails’ dashboard and insights feature that is automatically updated in real-time by the data in the files. The solution’s ability to monitor and show him when any alteration has been made to the data, allows Matlin to maximize efficiency and performance.
With DataRails, Matlin gained both control and flexibility. DataRails also helps Matlin to provide better service to Kelso’s employees, since they can accurately monitor their investments in a timely fashion. No more waiting until the end of a long, drawn-out consolidation process – any changes made can be viewed immediately, on the fly. By utilizing the DataRails platform, Kelso has accelerated its reporting process with a more lean and seamless system to support its data-intensive initiatives.