The Decanter Power List 2013
39 John Kapon (31)
CEO, Acker Merrall & Condit, 41
This New York wine retailer and auctioneer, launched in 1998, has made news since it grossed US$98.5m, a single-year record for an auction house, in 2010. It made sales of US$46m in the first half of 2012 – 32% ahead of its nearest competitor. Acker, with CEO Kapon a visible presence, moved into Hong Kong in 2008 and took advantage of the spiralling prices for fine wine. It then foresaw the resurgence of the US market, in 2011 buying auction house Edward Roberts International in Chicago. Kapon is no stranger to controversy: Acker (among many auction houses) is linked with collector Bill Koch’s litigation, and its name will feature in the trial of Rudy Kurniawan (see ‘A Month in Wine’, p11) in connection with the 2008 Domaine Ponsot fraud.