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Sotheby’s announced that Tobias Meyer, who has served as the auction house’s worldwide head of contemporary art since 1997, will leave the company. Meyer joined Sotheby’s in 1992 as head of the contemporary art department in London. Rumors have swirled that Meyer’s departure was the result of pressure from Sotheby’s investors to establish new leadership and more efficient operations. Hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb, who owns Third Point LLC and is Sotheby’s largest shareholder, has spoken critically of the auction house’s executive compensation and supposedly waning competitive edge.

Meyer said, “I will always cherish my time at Sotheby’s and look forward to the next chapter in my career.I have had over 20 years of the most marvelous experiences at Sotheby’s where I have made many friends and had wonderful times. I wish Sotheby’s the best of luck in the future.”

The auction house said that it has no plans to fill the role of worldwide head of contemporary art. Alex Rotter will continue as the head of contemporary art in the Americas and Cheyenne Westphal as the head of contemporary art in Europe.

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