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One of the harshest battles between an activist investor and a company came to an end on Monday, when Sotheby’s announced it had reached a deal with hedge fund billionaire Dan Loeb.  Third Point, run by Loeb, won a partial victory, securing three board spots and the removal of a poison pill that will allow it to raise its stake in the company to 15%, yet he didn’t manage to force embattled CEO Bill Ruprecht to ease his grip on the company, as he’s manage to hold on to his job while remaining president and chairman of the board of directors.

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Monday, 24 December 2012 11:15

Simon de Pury Leaves Phillips de Pury & Company

On December 23, Swiss auctioneer and art collector, Simon de Pury, stepped down as Chairman of the New York-based auction house, Phillips de Pury & Company. The announcement was a shock to many as de Pury has helmed the business for the past twelve years. The Russian firm, Mercury Group, recently completed the acquisition of de Pury’s remaining shares in the company.

Phillips’ CEO, Michael McGinnis, said, “Simon has served as a tireless ambassador for the Company and a compelling presence at the podium. We thank him for his spirited enthusiasm, leadership and dedication.”  

Beginning in the New Year, the auction house will revert to its original name, Phillips, from its founding in 1796. The company, which specializes in contemporary art and design, has operated under the name Phillips de Pury and Company for the past eight years. In addition, starting in February 2013, the auction house will begin the expansion of its Manhattan headquarters on Park Avenue, adding more gallery and office space.

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