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The Fine Art Group invests in rare art for long-term capital development and advises some of the largest art funds in the world. It has overseen the sales of multimillion-dollar artworks and also has an art lending service.
Founder and CEO Philip Hoffman began his foray into
the art world when, having been identified as a financial prodigy, he was plucked from his accountancy job KPMG at the age of 27 to be finance director at Christie’s, where he stayed for 12 years. He became the youngest member of its management board at just 33, and later served as the deputy CEO for Europe.
In 2001, he set up the first ‘art hedge fund’, the Fine Art Fund, investing $25 million, and started buying up blue-chips. That fund turned into six subsequent funds, branching out into auction guarantee funds and collection management, art advisory, art financing and auction underwriting, rebranding as the Fine Art Group to reflect its expansion into what it is today.
‘If you’d asked me if I was interested in art when I started, I’d have said no, but 28 years in the art business has changed that,’ he says. Now he covets a room full of Impressionists, Old Masters and contemporary paintings, including a Canaletto of London, a Mondrian, and a Bruegel.