Jamie Dimon’s son-in-law has been caught up in an unattractive dispute with a Texas-dependent vitality govt, who has accused him, alongside with private-equity big Apollo World Management, of orchestrating a plan to rigid the oil-and-gas driller out of his stake in the valuable firm he developed.
Joey Romeo — a Princeton-educated buyout government who married his Harvard Business Faculty sweetheart, Julia Dimon, in 2011 — is part of a team of Apollo execs accused of luring Varun Mishra into a partnership that inevitably turned bitter, with Mishra alleging he obtained cheated out of $21 million, according to an explosive arbitration declare Mishra filed past month.
Immediately after tapping Mishra’s skills on organic fuel and petroleum to make an vitality organization, Romeo and other Apollo executives allegedly pushed him out as CEO – a coup that came shortly following Mishra elevated questions about millions of pounds that Romeo had ordered be charged to the company’s expense accounts, according to the filing.
Folks shut to Apollo denied that any charges compensated by Varun’s organization were being inappropriate.
The spat provides a rare glimpse within not only the rough-and-tumble entire world of non-public-fairness discounts, but also the business enterprise of household users of the billionaire manager of JPMorgan Chase, who have primarily retained a small profile.
Romeo, now in his late 30s, owns a device in 1185 Park Ave. – two flooring below the famous banking tycoon – a $7 million, 3,825-sq.-foot unfold that is the former household of legendary furnishings designer Vladimir Kagan, home data demonstrate.
Apart from a couple of marriage snaps on social media, 1 of the number of publicly available shots of Romeo surfaced in a controversial December 2013 Christmas card, in which Dimon and his family romped all around the palatial apartment hitting tennis balls. In just one shot, Romeo was caught leaping barefoot above household furniture.
Romeo has been at Apollo because 2013 – and was introduced on board at the urging of the late, legendary JPMorgan dealmaker Jimmy Lee, in accordance to resources. Just before Apollo, Romeo had been an associate at GE Capital’s Vitality Money Services enterprise.
“Jimmy referred to as a good deal of persons to say, ‘Hire Joey,’” a source with know-how of Apollo instructed The Publish. “Joey did not go by the normal recruitment course of action.”
MIshra, meanwhile, claims that Romeo obtained snooty and sarcastic as their business enterprise romance steadily went south.
“Joseph Romeo can be explained as a particular person who continually belittles you,” Mishra, a 41-year-old Indian immigrant who arrived to the US as a student, reported in a penned statement to The Submit. “Without being aware of me – or my immigration heritage – he commented on me that ‘Isn’t it way too simple for you all to make cash?’”
Romeo, who is named as a defendant in the arbitration claim alongside with Apollo and other several recent and former workforce at the company, didn’t respond to The Post’s ask for for remark.
An Apollo spokesman advised The Submit that Mishra was “disgruntled” and mentioned that he experienced been fired “for lead to.” The spokesman additional that Mishra had engaged six distinct sets of lawyers and submitted a past arbitration need, “which he voluntarily withdrew.”
“We strongly assist our crew and categorically reject Mr. Mishra’s phony, defamatory and constantly changing allegations,” the Apollo spokesman explained.
Mishra advised The Submit he withdrew a prior arbitration assert simply because he considered it gave him a better chance to settle with Apollo. Just after that settlement fell apart, Mishra stated he filed the latest 1.
In accordance to Mishra’s declare, Apollo executives approached him in 2015 to supply at minimum $400 million to build out a enterprise that would sooner or later develop into American Petroleum Partners. Beneath the arrangement, Mishra would lead Pennsylvania wells he’d amassed and provide as CEO on an H1-B visa although Apollo would give the money for growth.
But the future year, Apollo and Romeo pulled the rug out on Mishra, axing a offer for App to receive a main all-natural gas fracking business for $360 million – only to turn all-around and scoop up the business by yet another firm in which some Apollo principals had been “likely direct or oblique beneficiaries,” according to arbitration papers.
Inspite of allegedly finding shortchanged by Apollo on the fracking offer, Mishra experienced by now committed his wells to the App venture, according to the complaint.
By that time, Mishra advised The Publish, he recognized Romeo experienced been approving expenditures for Apollo executives’ limousines and other large-close travel to be paid out for out of American Petroleum. In accordance to Mishra’s suit, Romeo was siphoning “multiple hundreds of thousands of dollars” out of Mishra’s company to pad the accounts of Apollo and its affiliates.
Mishra alleges that Romeo had directed Collin King, then-APP’s main economical officer, to “make considerable payments to Apollo without the need of Mishra’s knowledge of approval.”
“Before he was fired, to my information, he never alleged that the business reimbursed costs — to Apollo or anyone else — that have been not 100% authentic organization expenses,” King, who now performs for APP’s successor company Large Highway Assets, informed The Put up. “Romeo never ever directed me to approve any inappropriate expenses, and I by no means did so.”
MIshra and his attorney both explained to The Post that he experienced without a doubt elevated the difficulty of inappropriate costs with King and with Romeo immediately.
Mishra statements he rang alarm bells, bringing it to Romeo’s supervisor’s attention, but his protests blew up in his face. On Nov. 7, 2019, Romeo traveled to Canonsburg, Pa., with his manager, Olivia Wassenaar, to confront Mishra. They demanded he resign and settle for a “paltry” payout — stating usually “he would be terminated for trigger,” the filing claims.
Mishra refused, noting in his arbitration filing that he’d never been reprimanded or warned – allow by yourself disciplined – for his overall performance as APP’s president and CEO, nor experienced he acquired any prepared detect of any violations of his work settlement.
The allegations arrive as Apollo is below a consent decree from 2016 right after the Securities and Trade Commission stated an Apollo senior partner improperly charged costs to selected company-run cash. If Mishra’s promises are discovered to have merit, they could bring about one more SEC probe of Apollo’s practices, resources informed The Publish.
Ernest Badway, a partner at regulation company Fox Rothschild, reported the optics of the allegations “look dreadful,” but added that they are not automatically illegal. “Sadly, it would be misallocating expenses” if Apollo associates billed journey and other outlays to Application as an alternative of the agency by itself, Badway mentioned.
“The SEC has started investigations with substantially significantly less than this,” he explained. Even now, Badway mentioned, SEC regulators will aim on who was probably harmed by Romeo and Apollo’s alleged actions if traders didn’t experience any losses – and only Mishra did – regulators may possibly be much less apt to probe the predicament.
In the meantime, Apollo marketed APP’s property in 2020 to Quantum Power Associates-owned Tug Hill Working for all-around $30 million, the arbitration assert alleges. In Might of very last year, Quantum sold its property – like the previous APP’s – to Leading All-natural Means for $6 billion, the declare alleges.
Mishra obtained all-around $700,000 for his App stake soon after the Tug sale, but he claims he really should have received $21 million primarily based on what the belongings resold for – together with the $10 million in cash he set up when he inked a offer with Apollo.