Leon Black sees Apollo doubling assets in five years

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Leon Black, co-founder of Apollo Global Management Inc., said the firm is on course to almost double its assets under management to $600 billion in five years.

The target “does not represent the end game for Apollo,” Black said at the firm’s 2019 Investor Day, rather “a step along the way.” It would be achieved through strategic and organic growth, he said. A near doubling from the current $323 billion in total assets would be a similar pace to the past five years for the firm -- Apollo managed about $164 billion in 2014.

The alternative asset management industry has been growing at a robust clip in recent years. Apollo and its rivals, including Blackstone Group Inc., and KKR & Co., are collecting record amounts of cash from investors. Pensions, endowments and sovereign wealth funds are attracted to the long-term performance of the firms over more volatile hedge funds.

“We expect to continue to grow at a rapid pace by applying our value-oriented approach across related investment categories,” Black said. “The opportunities in front of us are massive and provide countless years of future growth potential.”

Apollo has seen enormous growth in its credit business from Athene Holding Ltd., the insurer it established in 2009 and built into one of the top fixed-annuity providers in the U.S. Apollo announced last month it was doubling down on its investment in Athene, which has proven an essential fixture in Apollo’s financial apparatus. Analysts have estimated that Athene accounts for about 25% of Apollo’s overall value.

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