- J -

   J-Curve Effect: The curve realized by plotting the returns generated by a private equity fund against time (from inception to termination). The common practice of paying the management fee and start-up costs out of the first draw-down does not produce an equivalent book value. As a result, a private equity fund will initially show a negative return. When the first realizations are made, the fund returns start to rise quite steeply. After about three to five years, the interim IRR will give a reasonable indication of the definitive IRR. This period is generally shorter for buyout funds than for early-stage and expansion funds.

- K -

   Key Employees: Professional management attracted by the founder to run the company. Key employees are typically retained with warrants and ownership of the company.
   Key man clause: If a specified number of key named executives cease to devote a specified amount of time to the Partnership, which may also include time spent on other funds managed by the manager, during the commitment period, the "key man" clause provides that the manager of the fund is prohibited from making any further new investments (either automatically or if so determined by investors) until such a time that new replacement key executives are appointed. The manager will, however, usually be permitted to make any investments that had already been agreed to be made prior to such date.