First Data

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KKR's "Window Dressing Exercise" no Solution to Revenue Problems

Director (Former Employee)

ProsGreat people and talent. Good legacy products.

ConsNo loyalty to those that have invested many years of service and/or have contributed in a major way to First Data's bottom line. No path for professional development. Losing lots of good people and talent for the sake of short-term bottom-line impact. Lack of innovation to keep pace with market changes in payments arena. Near-term cost cutting will continue and employee moral is on a steep decline.

Advice to Senior ManagementKKR is acting in a very predictable manner with its largest investment asset. KKR's patience is in the rear view mirror, seeking to IPO First Data in the near term. Unfortunately, KKR has lost sight of the importance of innovation due to it's "financial blinders". My advice to KKR - you better pay attention to who is biting at your heals rather than manually bailing the water out of a sinking titanic. The sad truth to the Private Equity game that is currently being played out with First Data is that KKR's efforts to position First Data for an IPO by eliminating vast amounts of IP (ie.."well Mr Investor, the bottom line looks fine to me) neglects to consider one of the most important ingredients, the run rate of net new revenue. If KKR spent half the time it spent laying off good talent on understanding how they could generate net new revenue, then things might be different for their investment horizon. Being a large player in the payments space is a huge competitive disadvantage and KKR is desperately trying to hang on to the back (where's the innovation?) of a fast moving train on the payments railway. At the moment, KKR is simply throwing heavy luggage out the back of the C130 cargo ship in hopes that the improved fuel economy with make it fly further...the problem with this strategy is the fact that the engines haven't been serviced in way too long and there are only two solutions to the problem a) a mid-flight surgery (ie fire sale), or b) and unpleasant crash landing far short of the landing strip (need i explain?). Hate to say it....yet the debt load/investment needs to be heavier on the innovation front and rev run rate needs to have a pulse before the public will "buy-in" to an IPO. Perhaps a lesson in AGILITY is in order. Bringing on Jon Judge was the best thing that happened to First Data in the past several years as he really did care about the things that matter most....only to leave First Data at the hands of those whose priorities are elsewhere. At the end of the day, this is a classic case of KKR biting off more than it could chew...which will most likely result in some serious heartburn, not just for those getting riffed, but for those whose pocketbooks will be adversely impacted. Perhaps a new acronym is in order...along the lines of Keep Kleenex Ready!

No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Overall, my 2 year tenure at First Data was very good; however, the last year was extremely disorganized.

    Vice President (Former Employee) Atlanta, GA

    I worked at First Data full-time for more than 3 years


    Pros: One of the less "political" organizations I have been a… Cons: Just disorganized and some very, very poor decisions made at… Advice to Senior Management: Get organized from an organizational perspective and set stable goals other than just going public. Employees… No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company… More
    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities
    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Days drag on.

    POS Help Desk (Current Employee) Omaha, NE

    I have been working at First Data full-time for more than a year


    Pros: Benefits. Management(most). Good amount of PTO. Very… Cons: The pay. Constant changing of policies. High turn-over… No, I would not recommend this company to a friend More
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