Many would assume that Marc J Leder, co-founder of global equity firm Sun Capital Partners Inc. has it easy. After all, the guy makes massive profits every year and is also a co-owner of the professional basketball team Philadelphia 76ers. Additionally, he is also an avid arts collector and is the Director of the Berggruen Museum in Berlin. However, if one takes the time to talk face to face with Marc Leder, one would realize that he owes much of his success to persistence and perseverance. When interviewed at the Fostering a Legacy fund raising event, he said that he faces challenges every day, just like everybody else. He humbly said, “It’s like the old saying ‘how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time’”. He insisted that slow and steady is the way to go. “So my whole career, my whole life, has been one step at a time. I started by paying for college with student loans, first job on Wall Street, worked my way up, started my own company from scratch. I built it, one deal at a time.”
From Wall Street to Private Equity
After graduating from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics, Marc Leder got started on his career by working for Lehman Brothers in New York. He was so good at his job that it was not long until he became the Senior Vice President of the company. However, he was hungry for bigger challenges, so in 1995 he left Lehman Brothers to establish Sun Capital Partners Inc., a global equity firm that specializes in company buyouts with his fellow Wharton classmate Rodger Krouse. “It’s incredibly rewarding to come in and provide the necessary capital and human resources to transform potential into results,” Marc Leder enthusiastically said. He derives immense personal satisfaction to see formerly struggling companies bloom again. “Sometimes our work saves companies and jobs that might otherwise have gone away because the business became uncompetitive.”
Philanthropy Also Needs Persistence
Aware of his good fortunes, Marc Leder also actively engages in humanitarian projects that help those who are less fortunate. While he is aware that poverty cannot be solved overnight, he believes that with persistence, it can be reduced while maximizing aid. “Rodger and I support two nonprofit charter schools in Florida, and we support other causes through the Sun Capital Foundation,” he said. “There is a real intersection between philanthropy and business.” So far, Marc and his partner Rodger have donated to over a hundred charity organizations. An avid arts collector, Marc Leder is also the Director of the Berggruen Museum in Berlin and the Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, which specializes in supporting emerging artists from tough inner cities get more media exposure. Marc Leder also encourages all his employees at the Sun Capital Partners Inc. to get involved in charity work and nominate their favorite local charity organizations. After all, with persistence, every little bit helps.