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Apollo Nearing PetSmart Deal in Year’s Biggest U.S. LBO

Leon Black’s Apollo Global Management LLC is nearing a buyout of PetSmart Inc., the retailer with a market value of $7.72 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said, in what would be the largest leveraged deal for a U.S. company this year.

New York-based Apollo is in late-stage talks to buy PetSmart for about $8 billion following an auction process that has been underway for weeks, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified because the talks are confidential.