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Ogilvy Exodus Continues, Rainmaker Berman to Blackstone Ogilvy Exodus Continues, Rainmaker Berman to Blackstone

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Influence

Ogilvy Exodus Continues, Rainmaker Berman to Blackstone

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FILE - In this July 28, 2000 file photo, Wayne Berman is seen in Philadelphia. Mitt Romney accepted nearly $280,000 in contributions raised by a former lobbyist for Fannie Mae, despite the GOP candidate's blistering criticism of the mortgage giant. Romney and other Republicans haven't identified other so-called fundraising “bundlers,” leaving voters in the dark about who their campaigns are indebted to. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast, File)  (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast, File)

A day after announcing the departures of three senior executives, Ogilvy Government Relations is saying goodbye to its chairman and chief rainmaker Wayne Berman, who is joining the private equity firm Blackstone as a senior political and strategic adviser. 

The news is a crushing blow to a firm that just yesterday tried to put a happy face on the news that it was losing CEO Drew Maloney and senior vice presidents John O'Neill and Elena Tompkins. Berman, a veteran lobbyist and GOP political operative, was widely considered the engine behind the firm's impressive growth. 

Speculation that Berman was leaving for Blackstone, and that more departures are imminent, began swirling yesterday afternoon. Morning Money's Ben White reported Berman's departure this morning and the Alley confirmed it with a Blackstone spokesman. When the the Alley emailed Ogilvy president Gordon Taylor yesterday asking about a possible Berman departure, he didn't respond. 

But asked this morning if Berman's departure meant that the firm would lose Blackstone as a client, Taylor quickly wrote back, "No, Berman transitions from being our biggest partner to our biggest client."

He added there are "no other announcements or imminent departures."

Guess, we'll just have to wait and see.

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