Antiquorum Appoints Maron as Chairman

Antiquorum Auctioneers, the watch auction house, has appointed watch dealer and collector Robert Maron as its new chairman, its third in a year. The appointment was effective Sept. 1, said a company spokesperson. He succeeds John Tsukahara, who continues as chief executive officer, the company said. Tsukahara took over in August 2007 from founder and chairman Osvaldo Patrizzi.

Maron, a life-long watch collector, is president of Robert Maron, Inc., Thousand Oaks, Calif., which deals in rare, high-grade and vintage fine Swiss watches. In 1996, he was one of the first dealers to sell luxury watches on-line through his Web site. Maron is a member of the International Watch & Jewelry Guild and the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors.

In announcing the appointment, the company said Maron, one of several shareholders, is “committed personally, professionally and financially” to Antiquorum; will seek to build it up by “applying a focus on technology, unparalleled horologic expertise, and customer satisfaction,” and that “in addition to assuming leadership” of Antiquorum’s current team, he is bringing the “group from Robert Maron Inc.”

Spokespersons for Antiquorum declined to comment further on Maron’s appointment and effects on Antiquorum. Maron himself couldn’t be reached at press time.

Antiquorum has gone through several changes in the past year. In August 2007, a new board then-controlled by Artist House—a Japanese firm to which Patrizzi earlier sold part interest—ousted him as chairman and CEO. He was succeeded by Tsukahara, then an Artist House director. The new management and Patrizzi sued each other in multiple suits. Patrizzi has since founded a new watch auction house, Patrizzi & Co. Auctioneers, whose first auction is set for Nov. 18 in Geneva, Switzerland.

In early May, Artist House sold its interest in Antiquorum for $97,000 to a Hong Kong group called Forever Most Investment. However, later in May, Gerald Chase, a business executive and watch collector representing a group of investors, acquired 51 percent of Antiquorum, becoming majority shareholder.

Antiquorum’s next auction is set for Oct. 16, at its New York City branch. It will feature timepieces of Patek Philippe, Rolex, and A. Lange & Söhne, and a 1930 Longines watch owned by the renowned theoretical physicist Albert Einstein. Two more auctions are scheduled for Nov. 15 (Geneva) and Dec. 10 (New York).