Sunday 23 November 2014

Bond market: Ex-billionaire sells 007's car

Published 21/02/2013 | 04:00

Sean Connery as James Bond with the Aston Martin DB5, which has been put up for sale by former billionaire Thomas Straumann.

former billionaire Thomas Straumann, who owns the Aston Martin DB5 used to promote the 1965 James Bond movie 'Thunderball', has put the car on the block – where it is expected to fetch more than €3m.

The 49-year-old Swiss executive has already cut his stake in Straumann Holding, the dental-implant maker founded by his grandfather and father, put two hotels up for sale as well as his stake in watch-maker Moser.

"The key feature of this recent financial crisis is that it wasn't just a downturn in individual assets, but over all financial markets," said Martin Brown, a professor at the Swiss Institute of Banking and Finance at the University of St Gallen. "Richer people lost more, proportionately."

Mr Straumann, an engineer by training and a self-described bon vivant who had cigar-smoking salons built at his hotels in Gstaad and Basel, has seen his fortune decline to $708m (€529m) from about $1.18bn two years ago, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

"Until now I could juggle everything, but the economic environment has changed and demands that I am much more focused," Mr Straumann told 'Hotelier' magazine last November.

One sale that hasn't been public until now has been the sale of the Aston Martin, one of four used for filming or promotion of Bond films. Mr Straumann acquired the car in 2006 for 2.7m Swiss francs (€2.2m now) and had it restored. A car with the same chassis number is for sale by Richard Stewart Williams in Surrey, England.

The firm confirmed the £3m (€3.4m) asking price yesterday but wouldn't comment on the seller's identity. (Bloomberg)

Irish Independent

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