Philip Reiss, the innovative lawyer and deal-maker who was at the forefront of developments in the global advertising and communications industry, died on Saturday 13 January at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Hospital in New York.
Reiss passed away after battling against cancer of the colon, which he was diagnosed with in September 1999. He was 69.
Reiss was behind WPP's tender offer for J. Walter Thompson in 1987 and, as the senior partner in the law company Davis & Gilbert LLP, he oversaw the growth of WPP with its acquisition of Ogilvy & Mather in 1989 and Young & Rubicam in 2000.
'Philip was not only a great lawyer but a great friend, like a father or a brother,' Martin Sorrell, the chief executive of WPP, said. 'He was always ready to advise and help, with incredible patience and giving of his time.'
Shelly Lazarus, the chairman and chief executive of O&M, said: 'We shall miss his humanity, his decency and his wisdom.'