During a recent lunch on the backyard patio at Marc Rowan’s seven-acre estate in Greenwich, Connecticut, a close friend was struck by the 59-year-old Wall Street titan’s calm.
“He walked me around, and we were just schmoozing,” said Paul Wachter, who has known Rowan since the 1980s — when both men were just beginning their careers in the investment business. “You wouldn’t have thought at all, ‘This guy is under heavy stress.'”
In reality, Rowan is in the midst of one of the biggest challenges of his storied 35-year career of arranging jumbo-size deals, taking colossal risks, and reaping billion-dollar payouts.
In January, an independent review conducted by the law firm Dechert detailed the extent of the business ties between the late convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein and Leon Black, the central founder of the private-equity giant Apollo Global Management. Black announced then that he would retire from the CEO role in July and that Rowan, a co-founder of the firm, would replace him.
Joshua Harris, a private-equity guru and Apollo co-founder, was passed over as Black’s successor. In the months that followed, Harris announced he would step away from his day-to-day role in the business.
Rowan had been on a semi-sabbatical from the firm since the previous summer. He was spending time in the Hamptons, where he owned a restaurant business on the waterfront. But the scandal surrounding Black abruptly yanked Rowan back into the fold at Apollo. …….