Guillaume Cerutti

Guillaume Cerutti

CEO of Christie's

Guillaume Cerutti
By October 15, 2020 8:57 AM

What’s the best way to hold auctions for luxury goods when no one can bid in person? This year, Christie’s CEO Guillaume Cerutti nimbly led the auction house’s efforts to stem pandemic losses and build confidence in the market. “From the first of the year, we were on a mission to build a stronger market,” Cerutti told Observer. “Demand was still very strong, so that paved the way.” Cerutti describes the market for masterpieces as resilient and anticipates a more robust sales report for the fall due to rising confidence in the market. 

Part of the reason for their success lies in the auction house’s ambitious projects. In July, the company hosted “One,” an auction in consecutive sessions beginning in Hong Kong, then moving to Paris, London, and finally New York. Over four hours, 80,000 viewers across all Christie’s social media channels tuned in to watch, and a total of $420.9 million was spent. “Participation online is addictive,” Cerutti said. The CEO cited other innovative partnerships, such as the auction house’s pairing with La Biennale 2020 and 1:54 Contemporary Art Fair, which, pre-coronavirus, were inconceivable. 

While managing a multinational company weathering a pandemic’s effects, Cerutti still finds time to relax—if you can call training for triathlons a break. This October, he completed the Hever Castle Olympic Distance Triathlon, lowering his personal best, 3:20:00, by more than 13 minutes, to 3:06:39.

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