Lee Solomon, senior adviser, Apollo Global Management

Dealmakers Impact Report 2011: Finance

Solomon and his team orchestrated a pair of headline-grabbing pacts that closed within the span of two months last spring.

He spearheaded Apollo’s role in the creation of distributor Open Road Films, the joint venture of exhibitors AMC and Regal (Apollo owns AMC), which closed in March.

Two months later, the ink dried on Apollo’s $509 million purchase of “American Idol” owner CKX — a deal that Solomon engineered (he now serves on the board of CKX, which also controls the licensing rights to Elvis Presley and Muhammad Ali properties).

“They were two very different deals,” says the former COO of the Weinstein Co. “One was the formation of a company, and one was the acquisition of a company. It’s the difference between creating infrastructure and buying existing infrastructure.”

Although both deals prompted long hours and frequent challenges, the edge went to the Open Road pact.

“Everything is challenging when you’re building a company from scratch,” says Solomon. “You need to take things day by day and allow the business to evolve. We were fortunate to have great partners in AMC and Regal.”

KEY DEALS: Creation of Open Road Films, purchase of CKX

SPARE TIME: Golf, tennis, basketball, rooting for the New York Giants.

TOP CAUSE: Underprivileged children

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