Patrick Drahi, owner of the auction house, wastes no time and immediately removes the CEO and installs in his place the CFO of Altice USA, his cable company
by Maria Adelaide Marchesoni
2 'of reading
Last June when the French-Israeli telecommunications magnate Patrick Drahi announced the agreement for the privatization of Sotheby's , he declared to be: "very enthusiastic about building the future of Sotheby's together with the current managers and the team". This statement was disregarded in a few months and today it was called to direct the auction house Charles F. Stewart, appointed CEO instead of Tad Smith, who will become senior adviser to the new CEO.
The release of Tad Smith will cost Sotheby's approximately $ 28.2 million on the basis of a signed agreement that entitles it to receive compensation, including stock options, in the event of dismissal as CEO following a transaction. In 2018 Tad Smith received a gross salary as president and CEO of Sotheby's, amounting to 7,446,432 dollars, of which 1,4 million as a fixed annual salary, 2,8 million as variable remuneration and another 3 million dollars as stock options.
The new course
It is not the first time that Drahi draws from his team to fill executive roles at Sotheby's. Earlier this month, he replaced the former sales manager John Cahill and the CFO Mike Goss with Jean-Luc Berrebi, previously CEO of Drahi's family office.
Charles F. Stewart
He is co-president and CFO from 2016 of Altice , the Drahi cable telecommunications company. After having gained experience in the financial sector for about two decades as CEO of Itau BBA Corporate Investment Bank of the group Itau Unibanco one of the most important financial conglomerates and as an investment banker in Morgan Stanley. During his tenure at Altice, Stewart helped guide the US $ 2.1 billion in the US, oversaw the launch of a4media , the Altice advertising platform, and, perhaps the most important thing, helped manage the acquisition of Cheddar , the digital-first news company, for 200 million dollars.
Joined Sotheby's in March 2015 (after having been president and CEO of Madison Square Garden ), after the hedge fund action initiated by Dan Loeb, against the former CEO Bill Ruprecht. Under the leadership of Smith, the auction house has made several acquisitions of niche businesses such as the forensic analysis company Orion, the startup Thread Genius, Mei Moses and, above all, theArt Agency Partners, which Sotheby's bought for 50 million dollars at the beginning of 2016.