Josh Harris — the billionaire who owns the Philadelphia 76ers — is cutting his stake in Apollo Global Management following his co-founder Leon Black’s noisy exit as the private-equity giant’s chairman and chief executive.
Since May — when Harris announced he’d be leaving his “day to day role” at Apollo in early 2022 following Black’s surprise resignation amid controversy over his ties to dead pedophile Jeffrey Epstein — Harris has sold 6.6 million Apollo shares, according to a Bloomberg report.
That amounts to 18 percent of Harris’ holdings, worth an estimated $490 million. The stock sales are much larger than any by Marc Rowan, who succeeded Black as Apollo’s CEO, or Black himself, who has never sold a single share of Apollo, according to filings.
In a statement to The Post, a spokesperson for Harris said, “Josh remains a strong and supportive long-term shareholder of the company.”
A person with knowledge told The Post Harris remains focused on Apollo for now but is unsure of his future plans. Over the summer, there were reports Harris was considering launching his own private equity firm.
A person close to Harris told The Post that approximately 76 percent of the sales are part of “retirement planning and diversification” that was previously disclosed. “Harris still believes Apollo stock is massively undervalued and that it’s still a good investment long term,” this person adds. Even after the stock sales, Harris remains the second largest shareholder in Apollo.
Still, the sales come as Harris, 56, focuses more on his personal investments and his sports and media company Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment, according to a previous statement. Harris will officially depart his Apollo day job when the company’s merger with annuity provider Athene closes in the first quarter of 2022. Harris will remain on Apollo’s board of directors and will stay on the Executive Committee of the Board.
Harris’ relationship with Leon Black and other top brass at Apollo has been strained since Harris encouraged Black to leave amid scrutiny of Black’s relationship with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, according to numerous reports.