Swiss events company MCH, which runs Art Basel in Switzerland, Miami and Hong Kong, has created a new ‘global events’ division following the Masterpiece purchase.
The team at Masterpiece London will remain the same, led by managing director Lucie Kitchener and chairman Philip Hewat-Jaboor.
Kitchener, who has a background in marketing and the luxury sector, joined Masterpiece in January and has become its full-time managing director from this week.
Details of the expansion planned for the fair will be released next year.
Kitchener said: “It will not be expansion for expansion’s sake. We are developing the plans and it is about working out what will work for our exhibitors and collectors. We must retain the DNA of London but make it relevant in new markets too.
“We will not suddenly open in many locations all at once.”
The expansion plans will draw comparisons to TEFAF’s new fairs in New York. Kitchener said: “Having a number of fairs is a positive thing for the market and provides choice and a critical mass.”
The purchase price of the 67% stake was not disclosed. However, a 25% stake in the fair was sold in May by Stanley Gibbons for £1.4m.
The fair was launched in 2010 in the wake of the closure of the long-running Grosvenor House Art & Antiques Fair.
“We will not suddenly open the fair in many locations at onceLucie Kitchener, Masterpiece London
Hewat-Jaboor added: “Our great strength is we mix works of art from all periods and disciplines – that is what sets us apart. To take this to other parts of the world is a tremendous opportunity.”
Masterpiece London’s ninth edition will take place from June 28-July 4, 2018, at the Royal Hospital Chelsea. Hewat-Jaboor said the Royal Hospital will continue to be the home of the London fair.
Kitchener, who previously worked at firms such as David Linley’s bespoke furniture company Linley, will report into MCH CEO René Kamm. Kamm said Masterpiece is the “perfect match for MCH Group’s ‘Global Collector Events Strategy’” as it unites “collector groups from different sectors and holds great development potential”.