In the following list of the richest antique collectors, you might know certain individuals, not for their antique collections, but for other businesses they have. However, they all know where to invest their fortune in: Antiques.
11 Richest Antique Collectors
1) Bernard Arnault
Bernard Jean Étienne Arnault is the 72-year-old CEO of the LVMH group. The group contains luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton (fashion house), Moët & Chandon (champagne producer), Hennessy (cognac producer), and Hublot (watches). Hublot is one of the competitors of Rolex. Arnault is the richest man in Europe and the 4th richest person in the world. Next to being an extremely successful businessman, Arnault is an art collector as well. His collection includes works of Picasso, Yves Klein, Henry Moore, and Andy Warhol.
Arnault has a staggering net worth of 150,4 billion USD.
2) François Pinault
François Pinault is the French founder of the luxury group Kering and the investment company Artémis. Next to that, Pinault is also a major contemporary art collector. In 2019, his personal collection counted around 5,000 works. He is one of the leading men in Art Collections and runs luxury conglomerate PPR, which owns luxury brands such as Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Balenciaga and Alexander McQueen. Moreover, Pinault is the owner of Christie’s and an avid collector: His works are displayed in two museums in Venice.
Pinault has a net worth of 42,3 billion USD at this moment. That is significantly less than Arnault, but we can think of a whole lot of antiques he’s able to buy with that amount of money.
3) Paul Allen
Next on the list is Paul Gardner Allen. He’s the co-founder of the technology company Microsoft. He sadly passed away in 2018, but not after investing a lot in antiques and art. Allen established several non-profit community institutions that feature his private collections of historic artifacts.
At the time of his death, Allen’s net worth was 20 billion USD, which he planned to give away for the most part.
4) Steven Cohen
Steven Cohen is an American hedge fund manager. In his spare time, Cohen is really into sports and art. He’s a majority owner of the baseball team New York Mets. Cohen owns one of the world’s most valuable private art collections, worth over 1 billion USD, which includes notable artworks such as Koons’s Rabbit, Picasso’s Le Rêve, and Hirst’s The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living. Cohen is known for spending insanely much money on famous artists: he reportedly spent 137.5 million USD on De Kooning’s Woman III, and 155 million USD for Picasso’s The Dream that was famously elbowed by Steve Wynn.
Cohen’s net worth is 14,6 billion USD according to Forbes. Coming from 8,3 billion USD, he surpassed Roman Abramovich as number 4 in this list.
5) Roman Abramovich
Roman Arkadyevich Abramovich is best known for being the primary owner of England’s football club Chelsea. He’s a Russian-Israeli businessman and antique collector. In May 2008 Abramovich stepped forward as a major buyer in the international art auction market, spending more than 100 million USD. He has donated more money than any other living Russian, with donations between the years 1999 and 2013 of more than US$2.5 billion to build schools, hospitals, and infrastructure in Chukotka.
Abramovich has a net worth of 14,5 billion USD.
6) Samuel Irving Newhouse Jr.
Samuel Irving Newhouse Jr., that took a whole lot of breath to pronounce, was an American art collector. Next to Allen, he’s the second person in this list to own lots of art post-mortem. Irving Newhouse Jr. was the original owner of Jackson Pollock’s No. 5, 1948, one of the most valuable paintings in the world, which was later sold to David Geffen. His collections included Modern and contemporary art. He owned 700 million USD worth of art. In 2010, he was listed by Art News as among the top 200 art collectors in the world.
At the moment of his death, Irving Newhouse Jr. had a net worth of 13 billion USD.
7) David Geffen
David Lawrence Geffen founded several record labels and he’s the founder of film production company DreamWorks. Apparently, Geffen has an excellent relationship with Steven Cohen and Samuel Irving Newhouse Jr. having sold the Woman III by Willem De Kooning to the former and having bought Jackson Pollock’s No. 5, 1948 from the latter.
Geffen’s current net worth is 9,6 billion USD.
8) Leon Black
Leon David Black is an American investor. He’s known for being the co-founder of private equity firm Apollo Global Management. He collects art and has served as the chairman of the Museum of Modern Arts (MoMA) in New York. Black’s collection includes Old Masters, Impressionism, modern painting, Chinese sculpture, and contemporary art. He owns 750 million USD worth of art.
Black has a net worth of 8,6 billion USD.
9) Eli Broad
Eli Broad is an American billionaire entrepreneur and philanthropist. He is known for his philanthropic commitment to visual and performing arts, amongst other fields. He and his wife Edythe Lawson, own around 2.000 works by around 200 artists, including Jeff Koons, Jasper Johns, Andy Warhol, Jean Michel Basquiat, Roy Lichtenstein, Cindy Sherman, and Joseph Beuys. Together, they own a total of 2 billion USD worth of art.
Broad’s net worth is 6,9 billion USD.
10) María Aramburuzabala
María Asunción Aramburuzabala Larregui is a Mexican businesswoman and next to Broad’s wife the second woman mentioned in this list. She is chairwoman of venture capital firm Tresalia Capital. Unfortunately, there’s only a small amount of information that is publicly available about her art collection, but she is said to be a regular on the art-fair circuit. In 2010 the New York Times found her at Art Basel Miami Beach looking to acquire work for “a multi-story penthouse she owns in Miami Beach.”
Aramburuzabala has a net worth of 5,8 billion USD.
11) Boris Ivanishvili
Bidzina Ivanishvili, also known as Boris Ivanishvili (his Russian name when he worked there), was the Prime Minister of Georgia from 2012 to 2013. At the beginning of this year, Ivanishvili announced that he was leaving politics. In 2006, he purchased Picasso’s Dora Maar with Cat for 95 million USD. According to BBC News, that was the most expensive price ever paid for art at auction at the time. He invested 15.6% of his wealth in art collections.
Ivanishvili’s net worth is 4,8 billion USD.