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If the only thing you know about sports is who wins and who loses, you are missing the highest stakes action of all. The business owners that power this multibillion dollar industry are changing, and a new era of the business of sports is underway. From media and technology to finance and real estate, leagues and teams across the globe have matured into far more than just back page entertainment. And the decisions they make have huge consequences, not just for the bottom line, but for communities, cities, even entire countries.
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Billionaire-owned auction houses like Sotheby’s and speculative crypto-art make logical bedfellows.
Is this the future of Art?
Source: Sipa Asia/Shutterstock
Franco-Israeli telecom billionaire Patrick Drahi stunned the art world in 2019 when he bought venerable auction house Sotheby’s for $3.7 billion, raising eyebrows with his outsider style, appetite for debt and executive appointees parachuted in from the world of cable networks and banking.
Covid-19 has shown that having an owner with a background in technology and media might not be such a bad thing. Glamorous fine-art sales were dragged online and live-streamed at an unprecedented pace last year, and Sotheby’s accounted for more than two-thirds of online-only auction sales, according to research firm ArtTactic — beating arch-rival Christie’s. “We’ve crossed the desert,” as Drahi put it.