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- 28 Oct 2010
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Gulf State Hungry to Buy More Luxury Assets


If Qatar’s ruler gets his way, the next bid at Christie’s won’t be just for artwork but for the auction house itself

A few months back, we reported on how Qatar’s ruler Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani has been building a portfolio of luxury assets with his nation’s estimated $100 billion sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority (and its principal subsidiaries such as Qatar Holding and Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Co).

Following significant stakes in Porsche, Barclays, Credit Suisse, Fairmont Raffles hotels, various residential real estate assets around the world and an acquisition of Harrods, it was recently reported that Christie’s is next on Qatar’s wishlist. The auction house is a perfect fit for the emirate as it brands itself both as a more discreet luxury shopping hub (read our recent postcard from Doha) and as regional capital of culture and museums.

Bloomberg suggests that the ‘nationality’ of these luxury acquisitions (particularly British companies) is of strategic importance to Qatar when deciding on which elite assets to target


Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani

Reuters’ take on the story