The veteran rock manager, who worked with the likes of Aerosmith, Stevie Nicks, and Lenny Kravitz, has passed away at the age of 79, Billboard reported on Thursday (19Jan17).

After hearing the news, Poison frontman Michaels wrote a statement on his website paying tribute to Kaufman.

"I have just landed & heard the devastating & extremely sad news that Howard Kaufman has passed away," he wrote. "Howard was a great friend to me & a wonderful manager. My prayers, love & condolences go out to his family, the HK family, his friends & the countless others that he touched throughout his life. He will be greatly missed."

Whitesnake frontman DAVID COVERDALE shared a link to the news on Twitter and added, "It is with enormous sadness I share this heartbreaking news."

Kaufman teamed up with Irving Azoff to create Front Line Management in the 1970s and they represented artists such as the Eagles, Steely Dan and Jimmy Buffett. Once Azoff left in the 80s, Kaufman formed HK Management and his clients also included Def Leppard and Chicago. The executives merged their new companies and revived the Front Line name in 2005 and sold it to Ticketmaster in 2008.

"Howard was a giant among men. He never sought the spotlight, but was the best in the business," Azoff said in a statement to Billboard. "He was a great influence on me and taught me a lot. Despite his major health issues, he always wanted to work till the end and I’m glad he got his wish. It’s a tragic loss for our industry. He will be missed by me as well as scores of others he touched."

Kaufman's cause of death is not yet known, according to the website.