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Apollo inks secondaries deal with Alpine single-asset

Deal closed three months after Secondaries Investor reported the alternatives giant was set to back the transaction.

Apollo Global Management has marked its position as a buyer in the secondaries market with the close of a GP-led process with Alpine Investors, three months after Secondaries Investor reported that the alternatives giant was set to back a deal with the San Francisco-headquartered firm.

Alpine said last week it had raised $232 million of additional equity capital as part of a broader $462.4 million single-asset secondaries process for portfolio company Ingenio, an online advice platform. The capital raised will be for for future growth initiatives, according to a statement, which did not identify the backer of the process.

Secondaries Investor reported in May that Apollo was set to make its secondaries market debut by moving Ingenio out of Alpine’s 2013-vintage fund and into a continuation fund. Apollo’s GP solutions team, which has seed capital from the firm’s Hybrid Value fund, was understood to be the unit working on the deal.

Apollo did end up backing this process, according to a source familiar with the transaction.

Ingenio owns advice-focused platform brands including Horoscope.com, Astrology.com and PsychicCenter.com, according to its website.

“This continuation vehicle will allow for Ingenio to sustain its growth as they further optimise their consumer acquisition model, expand their reach with M&A, and execute on near-term product innovations to better serve their consumers and advisors,” Alpine partner Mark Strauch said in the statement.

The Ingenio process marks Alpine’s second single-asset deal, following its process involving TEAM Services Group in January.

Credit Suisse advised on the transaction, with Kirkland & Ellis providing legal advice, according to the statement.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges advised Apollo on the transaction, a spokeswoman for the law firm told Secondaries Investor.

Single-asset deals accounted for 24 percent of total secondaries market volume in the first half of this year, according to data from Campbell Lutyens, shared with Secondaries Investor.

Secondaries Investor reported in April that Apollo was building a secondaries business. The firm has since hired Earl Hunt from Goldman Sachs to co-lead its credit secondaries unit – an area it plans to be a “category killer” in, according to chief executive Marc Rowan, speaking on Apollo’s first quarter earnings call.

Separate spokespeople for Alpine and Credit Suisse declined to comment on Apollo’s involvement in the Ingenio deal. Apollo and Kirkland did not return requests for comment on Apollo’s involvement in the deal.

– This story was updated to include Weil’s involvement in the process.