Apollo names Kleinman, Zelter co-presidents

The appointments represent a recognition of the pair’s success rather than succession planning, a source close to the firm told PDI.

Scott Kleinman and James Zelter have taken on the titles of co-president at Apollo Global Management, broadening the firm’s executive leadership following similar moves by other publicly traded asset managers.

The two men will have “full responsibility” for the firm’s revenue-generating and investments businesses, the firm said, with Kleinman overseeing Apollo’s private equity and opportunistic businesses and Zelter managing credit and yield businesses.

Senior managing directors and co-founders Josh Harris and Marc Rowan will continue to serve on the strategic leadership and investment committees along with Leon Black, the firm’s founder, chief executive officer and founder.

Kleinman and Zelter will report to Harris.

The two co-presidents will continue to serve on the investment committees of the groups they oversee. The appointments are effective 1 January, according to the statement. Both men are long-time veterans of Apollo, with Kleinman joining in 1996 and Zelter following suit a decade later.

A source close to the firm said the plan was “not so much about succession” as it was part of the “evolutionary” nature of the firm, the person explained, saying it is a recognition of the success Kleinman and Zelter have had in their current roles. Harris and Rowan are in their 50s, much younger than some of the other top executives at Apollo’s top rivals.

“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,” Black said.

The firm declined further comment.

The Carlyle Group promoted Kewsong Lee, head of the Global Market Strategies division, which includes Carlyle’s credit operations, and Glenn Youngkin, the firm’s president and chief operating officer, to co-CEOs last month. Firm founders David Rubenstein and Bill Conway Jr. relinquished their co-CEO titles and became co-executive chairmen.

KKR also laid out it its next generation of when it promoted Scott Nuttall and Joe Bae to co-presidents, who took over day-to-day operations of the firm. Henry Kravis and George Roberts remain co-chief executive officers and co-chairmen.

GSO Capital Partners also broadened its top ranks by naming Dwight Scott, who heads the energy debt business, to president, broadening his portfolio to include additional groups within GSO. Co-founders Bennett Goodman and Tripp Smith continue to oversee the business.