Apollo reaps big rewards off stock markets

Michael Bow
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BOOMING stock markets helped Apollo Global Management, the private equity firm behind Claire’s Accessories jewellery chain, boost its operating profits last quarter.

The company, run by former Drexel Burnham Lambert rainmaker Leon Black, said a rise in the value of equity markets had helped drive economic net income (ENI) – a measure of pre-tax operating performance – up 40 per cent between July and September.

A spate of partial exits in the period – including the continued sale of shares in UK estate agent Countrywide, which it floated in London in March – and the flotation of US supermarket Sprouts Farmers Market and Texas-based energy business Athlon Energy during the quarter helped drive up revenues to $1.2bn (£746m), a 52 per cent annual rise. Black said earlier this year the firm was selling “anything that’s not nailed down”, due to the good environment for realising investments in its array of portfolio companies.

“We believe we’re in a good realisation environment. It’s clearly a less good deployment environment,” president Marc Spilker said yesterday.