Silver Lake Said to Tap Ex-SEC Enforcement Lawyer for Compliance

Jan. 24, 2017, 5:46 PM

By Matt Robinson and David Carey, Bloomberg News

Silver Lake, the second-biggest private equity firm focused on technology, hired the former head of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Philadelphia office to oversee compliance, joining Blackstone Group LP and KKR & Co. in tapping ex-SEC lawyers for such roles.

Sharon Binger joined the company’s office in Menlo Park, California, and replaces Sahil Desai, who left last summer to work at First Republic Bank, according to people with knowledge of the move, who asked not to be named because the hire hasn’t been announced. Binger left Wall Street’s main regulator last month after joining the agency’s enforcement division in 2008.

Binger declined to comment as did Sourav Bhowmick, an outside spokesman for Silver Lake.

Private-equity firms have been hiring top SEC attorneys since Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act in 2010, which gave the agency greater authority to regulate the industry. Since then, the SEC has probed how fund managers divvy up expenses and disclose the details to investors, which are typically made up of institutions and wealthy individuals.

During her time at the SEC, Binger helped revamped the agency’s program examining whether private-equity firms and hedge funds comply with securities laws. She used a risk-based approach to determine which firms the agency should look into.

She also helped oversee litigation involving dozens of defendants accused of taking part in hacking news wires to trade on nonpublic information.

Binger follows Marshall Sprung, another former top SEC enforcement attorney, who joined Blackstone Group LP in May after the firm agreed to pay the SEC $39 million to settle claims that it failed to fully inform investors about fees and business discounts that benefited the firm.

Another former SEC colleague, Bruce Karpati, joined KKR & Co. in 2014 as global chief compliance officer. In June 2015, the firm paid $30 million to settle allegations it allowed some investors, including the firm’s own executives, to escape expenses linked to unsuccessful corporate buyouts.

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