ICM: Turmoil At One Of World’s Top Agencies
Major global talent agency ICM is reportedly in turmoil after rumors circulated about ICM President Chris Silbermann exiting the company, along with with several key personnel, including Ted Chervin and Rick Levy to launch a new agency.
According to Hollywood blogger Nikki Finke's Deadline Hollywood, Silbermann confided that he was leaving to a number of senior staffers, but later denied that he was planning an exit when confronted by Suhail Rizvi the founder of private equity investment firm Rizvi Traverse Management. Rizvi Traverse acquired a major stake in ICM in 2005.
Unnamed sources at ICM also told Finke that the relationship between Silbermann and ICM Chairman and CEO Jeff Berg has been increasingly contentious, with Silbermann "loudly" threatening to leave the agency unless Berg is removed.
According to Finke, Silbermann is convinced that Berg is attempting to orchestrate Silbermann's ouster from the agency and has been conducting private meetings with Rizvi that did not include Silbermann. Both agents are said to be seeking external financing for a buyout of the other.
The division between Silbermann and Berg appears to have evolved after Silbermann started pushing for a merger with Endeavor to revitalize ICM'S motion picture division. Needless to say, the merger never took place and now rumors are circulating about possible mergers between ICM and either Paradigm or UTA. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers