NEW YORK – Sotheby’s today announced the appointment of Charles F. Stewart as chief executive officer, effective immediately.
Stewart joins Sotheby’s from Altice USA, where he has served as co-president and chief financial officer since 2016. He assumed the role at Altice USA following more than two decades of operations, financial and corporate leadership experience in the U.S., Latin America and Europe, most recently as CEO of Itau BBA International PLC. Prior to that, he spent 19 years at Morgan Stanley as an investment banker in various leadership and client-facing roles, based in New York, Brazil and London.
Stewart succeeds Tad Smith, who served as CEO of Sotheby’s since 2015. Underscoring his confidence in Sotheby’s long-term success, Smith will become a shareholder of the company and act as a senior adviser to Stewart.
Patrick Drahi, owner of Sotheby’s, commented, “Charlie is a talented executive who brings years of international experience to Sotheby’s. I have known him for many years and have been impressed by his appetite for innovation, taking smart risks, and challenging the status quo. He has a proven record of driving growth and is ideally positioned to create value for Sotheby’s clients and our outstanding team. I also want to thank Tad Smith for his leadership over the past four and a half years. Sotheby’s reached a new level of success during his tenure and I am delighted we will continue to benefit from his experience in an advisory capacity.”
Stewart said, “I am thrilled to be joining such a successful and storied organization. Sotheby’s is renowned throughout the world for deep expertise, trusted relationships, and a long history of innovation. I look forward to adding my expertise to the talented global team and building on the success that has been established over nearly three centuries.”
During his tenure at Altice USA, Stewart helped establish the company as one of the leading technology, telecommunications and entertainment providers in the U.S. during a time of unprecedented change in the industry. In his role, he drove numerous operational and financial activities that integrated and transformed the company, refocusing it for innovation and growth. Notably, in 2017, he helped lead the company’s successful $2.1 billion initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange, the largest telecom IPO in 15 years. Additionally, Mr. Stewart spearheaded the expansion of Altice USA’s advertising and news businesses. This included the launch of a4, Altice’s advanced advertising platform, and numerous strategic acquisitions, as well as the growth of Altice News through the acquisition of Cheddar, integration of i24NEWS, and continued investment in hyperlocal news network News 12 Networks.
Stewart is a graduate of Yale University and lives in New York City with his wife and three children.