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Value of Private Equity Firm at Issue in Founder's Divorce

Marc Leder is the co-founder of Sun Capital Partners, a powerhouse in the industry, and he is not having a good year, according to Richard Wilner of the New York Post. The 47-year-old Long Island native is currently filing for divorce from Lisa Leder.

The couple had been married for 22 years. As a private equity trader, Leder has also seen his company lose a painful chunk of its portfolio due to the economic recession. Now, his two troubles are intersecting.

Marc and Lisa have reportedly agreed to split much of their $243 million in assets, a portfolio that includes a 15,000 square-foot mansion near Boca Raton, Florida, a ski house in Vermont, and a number of cars and a stake in a private jet. That, for the Leders, was the easy part.

Determining the value of Sun Capital Partners, and Marc Leder’s 50% stake in the company, has proven much more difficult, and the couple is reportedly engaged in a bitter battle to decide that issue.

According to Marc Leder’s divorce attorney, Albert Caruana, "Lisa wants half the value of Marc’s stake in Sun plus half of what he will get from Fund V down the road." Caruana refers to a $6 billion fund Sun Capital created two years ago. "He is a generous fellow but it would be abusive for him to do that, crazy for him to do that."

Caruana claims that Lisa’s right to a 50/50 split of the couple’s assets became locked in when she filed for divorce in February of this year.

In other words, the value the assets had at the time of the agreement is what she reportedly believes she should get. Caruana and his client believe that Lisa is entitled simply to half of whatever the assets are worth, and since the early part of the year, those assets, including Fund V, are worth much less.

"Marc has to continue to…turn [Fund V’s assets] around. He has to do all these things in the future to create the value [Lisa claims she is due]."

The attorney says that Lisa has admitted to having an affair with her 23-year-old tennis coach in 2008, and subsequently moved the couple’s three children into the house of her new boyfriend without their father’s consent.

"He found out his kids were moved two weeks prior only when two women approached him and asked him if he knew about it."

Leder has apparently offered his wife a settlement worth more than half of their shared assets, which would make her one of the wealthiest women in the state of Florida. That offer was turned down.

"Marc doesn’t like litigation," Caruana says. "He doesn’t want to be here. He has wanted to settle since October."

The Leders will be in court in early August to try again at an agreement, but Lisa Leder is requesting a significant amount of Sun Capital's documents in an attempt to prove what she claims the company is worth and thus what her share of it should be, and the dispute is not expected to be resolved until that evidence has been divulged and the value of the company firmly established.

Source: New York Post

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