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Holbein Madonna Sells for at Least $70 Million to Wuerth

Reinhold Wuerth, a German billionaire who turned a family-owned screw wholesaler into a global company, paid more than $70 million to buy a Holbein painting, beating a bid from the Staedel Museum in Frankfurt.

Wuerth purchased the painting from the heirs of the princes and landgraves of the state of Hesse, an aristocratic family descended from Charlemagne, according to an e-mailed statement sent today by Britta Fischer Public Relations on behalf of the Wuerth Collection. The Staedel Museum, where the Holbein has hung on loan since 2003, said in a separate statement that its own final offer of 40 million euros ($57 million) was rejected.