Arpad Busson

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Person.png Arpad Busson  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(financier, playboy)
Arpad Busson.png
Born27 January 1963
Alma materInstitut Le Rosey
Parents • Pascal Busson
• Florence Harcourt-Smith
Spouse • Elle Macpherson
• Uma Thurman
Founder ofARK
Member ofJeffrey Epstein/Black book
RelativesArpad Plesch
Former hedge fund manager and playboy who runs the charity Absolute Return for Kids. Big donor to the Clinton Foundation.

Arpad 'Arki' Busson is a former hedge fund manager and playboy who runs the charity Absolute Return for Kids (ARK) - (Not to be confused with the French child-snatching NGO Zoe's Ark). He is a big donor to the Clinton Foundation[1]. He is listed in Jeffrey Epstein's little black book.

Early life

Arpad Busson's father, Pascal Busson, was a former French army officer and Algerian War veteran, who later turned financier.[2] His mother, Florence "Flockie" Harcourt-Smith, was an English former debutante. His parents met in Paris and named their son after the Hungarian-born banker and esoteric pornography collector Árpád Plesch (1889–1974), who not only was Florence's step-father (he was the second husband of her mother, Marysia Ulam Krauss Harcourt-Smith), but had also been her step-grandfather (Plesch's first wife, Leonie Caro Ulam, was his second wife's mother).[3] Plesch was a mentor to Italy's richest man, Gianni Agnelli, the late head of Fiat.[4] Busson's aunt, Joanna Harcourt-Smith, was a companion of Timothy Leary, who coincidentally was married in the early 1960s to Nena von Schlebrügge, the mother of Arpad's partner Uma Thurman.[5]

He was educated in France and at the Institut Le Rosey in Switzerland. He then passed through national service as a medical orderly in the French army, of which a friend said: "He loved the discipline of the army – it was the making of him.".[6]

On being demobilised, Busson had a well-publicised relationship with the actress Farrah Fawcett and appeared in tabloid gossip columns. As he often refuses to give interviews, stories surround Busson – the story about Fawcett is that they met on the French Riviera. The story is only partly true, in that it was perpetuated by the gossip columnist "Taki" as a sort of in-joke: Taki knew Busson's mother, who was friends with Fawcett.[7]

Finance career

Busson entered the world of hedge funds in 1986 working with Dubin Swieca.[8] He was later employed as a marketing representative for Paul Tudor Jones's fund Tudor Investments.

In 1991, Busson founded the EIM Group to provide fund-of-fund management services to the growing institutional market for hedge funds.[9]

In November 2001, EIM, an asset management company run by Busson, was asked by the FBI to help trace the finances of al-Qaida.[10] The FBI noted that the firm was not a target of the investigation, and was cooperating fully.[11]

In December 2013, Busson merged his EIM group with Swiss listed investment company Gottex Fund Management Holdings.[12][13] In July 2015, Busson was named the next executive chairman of Gottex Fund Management for the interim, following Joachim Gottschalk stepping down from the position and finding a permanent executive chairman.[14]

Gottex Fund Management rebranded itself as LumX and was eventually delisted from the Swiss Stock Exchange in June 2020 after suffering losses of more than $55 million the previous five years, essentially ending Busson's time as a hedge fund manager.[15][16]

Absolute Return for Kids

He is a founding trustee of the children's charity ARK (Absolute Return for Kids) and serves as chairman of its board of directors.[17] Busson held the post of Chairman since the charity's inception. He stepped down from that position in 2009 but remains a member of the Board as founding chairman, and as chairman of ARK US. ARK raises charitable contributions from the hedge fund industry for children who are victims of abuse, disability, illness and poverty.

The Guardian noted "Busson lives a charmed life. Partner of supermodel Elle 'The Body' Macpherson, by whom he has two children, the French-born, London-based financier divides his time between their Notting Hill mansion, a villa in the Bahamas and his offices in exotic locations around the globe.[18]

Busson, a Riviera playboy of gossip column myth, is using his foundation, Ark, one of Britain's fastest-growing charities, to sponsor seven of Labour's flagship school academies. The foundation's level of influence will be considerable: sponsors help to shape the academies' curriculums and define their ethos. Quite why Busson thinks his charity can help transform failing schools in Britain's inner cities has so far been unclear."[18]

Ark has partnered with the Western Cape government in South Africa to help victims of HIV and open a string of homes for orphans in Romania."[18]

He is a patron of the Elton John AIDS Foundation[19] and a founding member of Theodora Children's Trust,[20] a charity "which brings music, magic and laughter to children in hospital through visits from performers."

Personal life

Busson began a relationship with Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson in 1996.[21] They have two sons together: Arpad Flynn Busson, known as Flynn (born February 1998 in New York City),[22] and Aurelius Cy Andrea Busson (born February 2003 in London).[23] The family lived together in London until Busson and Macpherson's separation in July 2005.[21]

Busson began dating American actress Uma Thurman in 2007[24] and they announced their engagement in June 2008.[25] In December 2009, it was reported that the two had ended their engagement,[26] but they reconciled and dated soon after their daughter's birth.[27] Busson and Thurman have one daughter together, Rosalind Arusha Arkadina Altalune Florence Thurman-Busson, known as Luna (born July 2012 in Boston, MA).[28] The couple called off the engagement for the second time in April 2014.[29] In January 2017, Thurman and Busson began a custody battle for their daughter.[30] Thurman ultimately received primary physical custody later that month.[31]

In 2012, Busson sold Andy Warhol's portrait Mao (1973) for $12 million at Phillips in New York.[32]

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  3. Etti (Mrs Arpad) Plesch, Horses & Husbands: The Memoirs of Etti Plesch, Dorset: Dovecote Press, pp. 130–139
  5. Etti (Mrs Arpad) Plesch, Horses & Husbands: The Memoirs of Etti Plesch, Dorset: Dovecote Press, pp. 130–139
  18. a b c
  21. a b,,1076842,00.html