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Clinton and Blair join Irishman in major international business


Former US president Bill Clinton and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair are to collaborate in a new business venture headed by former US government envoy to Northern Ireland, Declan Kelly.

The former leaders, regarded as two of the most powerful figures in the world, are joining a newly formed company called Teneo which will comprise a merchant bank, a private equity vehicle and an international consulting business.

The company has plans to open a Dublin office as well as offices in New York, Washington DC, London and Toronto.

Mr Clinton and Mr Blair will both serve on the Advisory Board of Teneo. It is the first time they have worked together in a business capacity, IrishCentral.com reports today.

It is expected that the company, with its HQ in Manhattan, could become one of the world’s leading advisory businesses.

Mr Kelly, who recently stepped down as economic envoy to Northern Ireland, has joined with Douglas Band, a long time advisor to Mr Clinton and they will serve as CO-CEO’s of the company. The third founding partner is Paul Keary who worked with Mr Kelly in FTI Consulting and Financial Dynamics.

Tipperary native, Mr Kelly sold his company Gallagher and Kelly public relations to Financial Dynamics, one of the world’s leading financial communications companies. He then led the buy-out of Financial Dynamics by FTI Consulting for $340 million – the largest price ever paid for a communications consulting company.

He became executive vice president of FTI Consulting, a 3,500-person business with a market capitalisation of over $2 billion.

He also served as an advisor to Hillary Clinton’s presidential election bid in 2008.

Teneo, derived from the Latin word “to guide”, will include a private equity business designed to complement the global consulting experience of its partners and there are also plans to add a separate wealth management component to the business.

Douglas Band has worked as a counsellor to President Clinton for 16 years and oversees the William J. Clinton Foundation with 1,400 employees