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    SOTHEBY'S ADVISES FORBES FAMILY TO SELL FABERGE COLLECTION TO VIKTOR VEKSELBERG

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    NEW YORK, February 7 (RIA Novosti correspondent Andrei Loshchilin) - Sotheby's receded from its rules and advised the Forbes family to sell the collection of the Faberge jewels before the April auction "for the sake of the client's interests," Sotheby's spokesperson Patty Fox told RIA Novosti.

    "Vekselberg's proposal was so serious that we decided to make an exception from our rules. Articles put up for auction have never been sold before it, but this case is unique. The collection and its history are unique," Patty Fox said.

    She is unaware of other claims for the collection.

    On her part, Forbes senior vice president Monie Begley has ruled out the possibility to officially announce the cost of the deal. "The Forbes family upholds the sanctity of their private life," she stressed.

    According to Begley, the new owner is to decide if founder Malcolm Forbes' name should be preserved in the title of the collection.

    This week well-known Russian businessman Viktor Vekselberg, the chairman of the board of the Tyumen Oil Company (TNK) purchased the world's largest private collection of Faberge jewels at Sotheby's. The collection belonged to the Forbes family of American media tycoons. The cost of the deal is kept secret. Formerly, experts estimated nine imperial Easter eggs and other 180 jewels at approximately $90 million.

    In January the Forbes collection was put up for auction scheduled for April 20-21.

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