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Apollo Global Names Two Executives Co-Presidents

The private equity giant has named two longtime executives to the newly-created positions but says the move does not amount to succession planning.

  • Alicia McElhaney

Asset manager Apollo Global Management has promoted two executives to the role of co-presidents, the firm announced Monday.

Scott Kleinman, the firm’s lead partner for private equity, and James Zelter, Apollo’s managing director of credit, will take on the newly created roles on January 1, 2018, according to a statement from Apollo. Kleinman, who joined Apollo in 1996, will focus on the firm’s equity and opportunistic businesses, while Zelter, who joined in 2006, will work on Apollo’s credit and yield businesses, according to the announcement. Both will continue to serve on investment committees and will report to Apollo co-founder and senior managing director Josh Harris.

Apollo, which manages $242 billion, is the latest in a string of private-equity firms to announce leadership changes. Apollo’s announcement comes after the Carlyle Group said in late October that its co-CEOs, David Rubenstein and William Conway, will step down in January and that Kewsong Lee and Glenn Youngkin will take their places as co-CEOs.

[II Deep Dive: Carlyle Founders Step Back in Leadership Shakeup]

Similarly, KKR & Co. laid out its own succession plan over the summer, sparking speculation about the succession strategies at other private equity firms as industry executives age.

A spokesperson for Apollo said its announcement does not signal succession plans, though, as the firm has one of the youngest teams of founders in the private-equity industry. Kleinman, 44, and Zelter, 55, will join Apollo’s co-founders Leon Black, 66; Marc Rowan, 55; and Josh Harris, 52, on the leadership team.

“Scott and Jim are two of the most talented investors and managers in the industry, and their promotions reflect a natural progression of their distinguished careers,” said Black in the announcement.