Billionaire art collector set to be next Georgian prime minister
Bidzina Ivanishvili’s Georgian Dream coalition party defeats the incumbent United National Movement
By Javier Pes. Web only
Published online: 02 October 2012
The political coalition party led by Bidzina Ivanishvili, the billionaire businessman and art collector, has won the Georgian parliamentary election.
The country’s president Mikheil Saakashvili conceded defeat today (2 October), saying that the opposition Georgian Dream coalition had won the country’s parliamentary election. Ivanishvili is expected to be nominated to become the new prime minister, the first to be democratically elected to the post.
Previously highly secretive, Ivanishvili made his fortune in Russia in banking and mining. He announced last year that as well as entering the political arena, he plans to build a “Guggenheim-style” museum in Tbilisi. It will have an acquisition budget of “one, two, three hundred million” dollars, he told the website Eurasianet.org.
He owns work by Anish Kapoor and Henry Moore, Egon Schiele and Monet, and in 2006 purchased Picasso’s Dora Maar au Chat, 1941, for $95.2m at Sotheby’s New York.
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