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Blackstone poaches Dell dealmaker

January 8, 2013: 12:32 PM ET

david_johnsonBlackstone looks to rebuild its tech private equity practice.

FORTUNE -- David Johnson is stepping down as senior vice president of strategy at Dell Inc. (DELL), in order to join The Blackstone Group (BX) as a partner focused on private equity deals in the tech sector. A Blackstone spokesman says that Johnson is expected to begin working at the firm in "a couple of weeks."

It should be interesting to see what sort of impact Johnson has on Blackstone, which has done far fewer technology deals than most of its private equity peers. It also remains to be seen if his hire is a one-off, or just the beginning of Blackstone's attempt to restock a tech team that has lost several senior investors since 2011.

Johnson joined Dell in 2009 from IBM (IBM), where he had headed up mergers and acquisitions. IBM actually sued Dell to prevent Johnson from leaving, but did not prevail. At Dell, Johnson reported directly to Michael Dell and oversaw such acquisitions as Quest Software ($2.4 billion) and Compellent Technologies ($960 million).

News of Johnson's move was reported earlier by Reuters. In related news, Dell has tapped Prakash Jothee to lead corporate strategy and Chris Kleiman to lead M&A activities. Both men were existing Dell vice presidents.

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Dan Primack
Dan Primack
Senior Editor, Fortune

Dan Primack joined Fortune.com in September 2010 to cover deals and dealmakers, from Wall Street to Sand Hill Road. Previously, Dan was an editor-at-large with Thomson Reuters, where he launched both peHUB.com and the peHUB Wire email service. In a past journalistic life, Dan ran a community paper in Roxbury, Massachusetts. He currently lives just outside of Boston.

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