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Davies is to leave the dealer association at the end of 2017 to return to the contemporary art world, as business director of Marian Goodman Gallery.

The association said it was open to applications from outside the art market but requires candidates to have “a proven interest in the art and antiques trade” and an understanding of issues facing small businesses.

Lord de Mauley, LAPADA chairman, said the ideal candidate will need the communication skills and grasp of dealer issues “to effectively convey the trade’s position to policymakers”.

A key aspect of of Davies’ three-and-a-half-year tenure was LAPADA’s involvement in negotiations with the government on ivory and other regulatory changes. Davies is also credited with relaunching the association’s website as a marketplace portal for its 550-plus members.

Strong position

De Mauley praised Davies for “leaving the association in a strong position, as a respected voice for the trade and with a high public profile”.

Davies said: “It has been an enormous privilege to have led LAPADA during an important period of growth and consolidation.”

The role has been advertised on LinkedIn and media websites, calling for a “firstclass ambassador and leader… with a compelling vision for the future”. Strong financial management skills are also required, as the LAPADA chief executive also holds the post of treasurer of BAMF.