Major surprise as Tom Brady signs up for Irish PR guru Declan Kelly’s new company.
Tom Brady, the football legend, has become a partner in the new firm Consello started by Irish-born Declan Kelly (54) who was forced to leave his former job as CEO of top public relations firm Teneo because of inappropriate behavior with several women at a Hollywood party.
Kelly admitted he had acted badly on the night and announced he was stepping down from Teneo and quitting alcohol. Now he is back and has nabbed one of America’s most iconic figures for his new firm.
Brady is described as “a proven leader, whose achievements are attained by mastering the skills of leadership, strategy, performance, and teamwork.”
Kelly’s departure from Teneo came after a flood of negative publicity about his behavior at the party and the dubious use of his connections to the Clinton family as reports in the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal and NY Times among others stated. Kelly has said privately that he believes he was targeted by rivals.
His departure ended a meteoric rise from obscurity for the Tipperary native who had taken the PR world by storm and turned Teneo into a company worth several hundred million at its height. Teneo continues to operate with Kelly’s close associate, Paul Keary, taking the top job.
The Financial Times was first to break the Brady story stating “Kelly’s effort to relaunch his career comes less than 12 months after the FT first reported allegations that the 54-year-old had inappropriately touched women while drunk at a May 2021 fundraiser for charity Global Citizen, which led him to quit his board seat at the charity and resign from Teneo. “
Other partners are Oscar Salazar, the former chief technology officer of Uber, and Steve Mollenkopf, the former chief executive of Qualcomm. The company will offer financial advice, merchant banking, and cryptocurrency advice according to their website.
Kelly was accused of trading on his relationship with the Clinton family when he was at Teneo. He and Doug Band, who was counselor to President Clinton when in the White House, started Teneo together but later parted company on poor terms.
As Politico noted, they started off with an inside connection to the Clinton colossus. With Bill Clinton serving in the paid position of honorary chairman, and Hillary as secretary of state, Teneo initially billed itself as a one-stop-shop for “C-suite consulting,” a blend of public relations advice for CEOs and more technical investor relations work. Corporate executives paid $250,000 a month. "They also, in some cases, got to hobnob with a former president,” Politico notes.
The New York Post was immediately hostile to Kelly’s new company and him personally, calling him a “disgraced spin doctor” and “Clinton crony."