Apollo’s Leon Black steps down, Sentinel sells Pet Supplies Plus for $700m

Apollo CEO Black to retire and Sentinel Capital sells Pet Supplies Plus to Franchise Group for $700 million.

Happy Tuesday!

Big people news today, readers. Apollo Global Management revealed Monday that Leon Black will retire as CEO by the end of July, while staying on as Chairman. Fellow Apollo Co-Founder Marc Rowan will succeed Black.

The decision comes after an investigation by the law firm Dechert found that Black paid sex trafficker, Jeffrey Epstein, $158 million for financial advice on tax issues and other operations for his family office from 2012 to 2017. Epstein first pleaded guilty for child prostitution in 2008.

The report confirmed no wrongdoing by Black. In a statment to press, Black reiterated that all fees paid to Mr. Epstein were for legitimate professional advisory services including that he was ‘completely unaware of Mr. Epstein’s abhorrent misconduct.’

The statement also mentions philanthrophy intiatives such as a $200 million pledge for gender equality that the soon to-be former CEO will support as a way to ‘address the grievous error of having maintained a professional relationship with Epstein.’

The investigation found that Apollo as a firm did no business with Epstein. Here’s the Dechert report.

The firm will expand the board to include four new independent directors. In addition, Apollo co-presidents Scott Kleinman and James Zelter will join the board and will take on increased responsibility for day-to-day operations.

Read more about Black’s retirement here.

More Pet News: Sentinel Capital Partners is selling the country’s third-largest pet speciality chain Pet Supplies Plus to Franchise Group for $700 million. The deal concludes a process first reported by PE Hub in December.

Sentinel’s purchase of PSP from Irving Place Capital was executed at a much lower multiple than the firm commanded this time around. “It was at a time when people were getting skittish with e-commerce growth,” a source told me previously.

The news comes on the heels of Petco’s latest go at an IPO. Petco Health and Wellness, backed by CVC Capital Partners and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, returned to the public markets less than two weeks ago for a third time.

The company was acquired from TPG and Leonard Green & Partners in 2016 at an approximately $4.6 billion value.

Read PE Hub’s brief on the deal.

That’s it for today! As always, write to me at karishma.v@peimedia.com with any tips, feedbacks, comments or just to say hello.

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