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Inside ‘Apollo Arena’: A Battle of Ideas for a Six-Figure Prize

July 28, 2021, 1:50 PM

One of Apollo Global Management Inc.’s most recent billion-dollar business initiatives started with an internal competition unlike anything seen before at the private-equity powerhouse.

During the height of the Covid-19 pandemic last year, the firm made a first-of-its-kind proposal to junior employees: Come up with an idea for a new business or innovation that complements Apollo’s existing platform and collaborate with people across different units to make it happen. The winning team would take home a $100,000 cash prize.

As an associate, Brian Laureano, 29, entered the contest with a pitch to build a new business around investing ...