Consultancy's Wealth Group Takes Artistic Turn

Tom Burroughes Group Editor May 4, 2018

Consultancy's Wealth Group Takes Artistic Turn

The consultancy is building expertise around fine art and collectibles in its wealth management practice, a sign of how this sector continues to attract attention.

Capco, the financial industry-focused consultancy, has launched a fine art and collectibles group in its wealth and asset management practice, highlighting a continued trend of high net worth people investing in and using artworks. 

The group is led by Phillip Ashley Klein, who joined the firm from Deloitte, where he was head of that firm’s art and finance practice in the US.

As private equity firms inject billions of dollars into art-related ventures, competition is intensifying and the marketplace is transforming, Capco said in its explanation for why it has created the group.

“We are witnessing the radical transformation of a $60 billion market as financial behemoths and `arttechs’ converge on the old guard of art market professionals,” Klein said.

With interest in fine art continuing as one of the “hard assets” that have featured as an investment trend in recent years, banks such as UBS, Citigroup and Deutsche Bank have sought to offer advisory services around art for clients. In other developments, Pictet and Carlyle Group, for example, have supported a joint venture business, Athena Art Finance, focusing on art-based finance.

In March, the Art Basel and UBS Global Art Market Report said the art market achieved total sales of an estimated $63.7 billion in 2017, an increase of 12 per cent on 2016, according to a new report. This comes after two years of declining figures. The study said that much of the uplift in sales in the auction and dealer sectors was at the top end of the market, capped by record prices in the auction sector, including the sale of the Leonardo da Vinci painting Salvator Mundi for $450 million at UK auction house Christie’s.


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