Allan Schwartzman leaves Sotheby’s following restructuring under new ownership

Allan Schwartzman at the New Museum gala in 2017. Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Following several recent high-profile departures since Sothebys went private last year, the auction houses chairman of fine art Allan Schwartzman is leaving just four years into his five-year contract. The head of the advisory firm Art Agency, Partners (AAP), which Sothebys acquired in a splashy $85m deal in 2016, Schwartzman will transition into a strategic consulting role for the auction house while developing new independent ventures, according to a statement released today.

Nina del Rio, the vice chairman, Americas and head of museum, private and corporate art services will helm the companys advisory services following Schwartzmans departure, effective immediately.

“We congratulate Nina del Rio on her expanded role at the company and her collaboration with Allan in lifting our advisory group to even greater heights” says chief executive Charles F. Stewart. “Equally, we wish Allan Schwartzman great success in his new ventures and are grateful for the leadership he has brought to Sothebys.”

“My time at Sothebys has been one of the most creative and rewarding periods of my professional life,” Schwartzman says. “In recent months, however, I have become increasingly committed to ventures Ive imagined that can only be carried out independently.”

Speculation over the Schwartzmans future with the auction house has been swirling since it was acquired and taken private by the French media mogul and notorious cost-cutter Patrick Drahi last summer for $3.8bn. Just a few months later, Tad Smith, Sothebys chief executive since 2015, was replaced by Charles Stewart, formerly the co-president and chief financial officer at Drahis cable television provider, Altice USA; other top executives like chief financial officer Mike Goss were also replaced by directors from Drahis companies.

Smiths reign at Sothebys was punctuated by expensive corporate acquisitions, the first and most high-profile being AAP. Schwartzman co-founded AAP with former Christies executive Amy Cappellazzo and Adam Chinn in 2014. Chinn had been made redundant prior to Drahis buyout, but in December, Capellazzo was appointed the headRead More – Source