TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Sotheby's, eBay plan live auctions

AFP/Getty Images
Works such as “Le Sauvetage” by Pablo Picasso could bring higher prices when real-time, online bidding is enabled. (Photo by EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images)

Daily Photo Galleries

By Reuters
Monday, July 14, 2014, 8:06 p.m.
 

NEW YORK — Sotheby's and eBay announced a partnership on Monday to make it easier to buy antiques, collectibles and works of fine art online.

The international auction house and the online marketplace plan to broadcast live auctions from the New York headquarters of Sotheby's that will include real-time bidding from anywhere in the world.

Auctions from other locations could follow.

The deal will connect Sotheby's, with its extensive inventory of fine art, antiques, books, jewels, watches and furniture, with eBay's 145 million active buyers around the world.

“We are joining with eBay to make our sales more accessible to the broadest possible audience around the world,” Bruno Vinciguerra, Sotheby's chief operating officer, said in a statement.

The timing of the venture occurs as the value of individual sales has escalated to highs. Francis Bacon's triptych painting, “Three Studies of Lucian Freud,” sold for $142.4 million last November in New York, the highest price ever for an item sold at auction.

Total sales in the global art and antiques market rose 8 percent to $65.9 billion last year, the highest level since 2007, with Asian buyers playing an increasingly important role, according to the European Fine Art Foundation's annual report.

Online sales could grow at a rate of at least 25 percent per year despite accounting for about 5 percent of sales in 2013, the foundation said.

Sotheby's said online bidders competed for 17 percent of the total lots it offered in 2013, and the number of lots purchased online jumped 36 percent compared to 2012.

John James Audubon's book “The Birds of America,” which fetched $3.5 million, set the record for an online purchase in a live auction at Sotheby's in April.

For eBay, the deal with Sotheby's is a chance to expand into the live auction market.

“When we combine its inventory with eBay's technology platform and global reach, we can give people access to the world's finest, most inspiring items — anytime, anywhere and from any device,” said Devin Wenig, the president of eBay Marketplaces.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. First Ebola case in U.S. confirmed in Dallas
  2. Murder charges dropped against sergeant who shot 2 unarmed Iraqi boys
  3. California becomes 1st state to ban plastic bags
  4. Secret Service chief endures blistering glare of Congress’ questions over White House breach
  5. Pentagon review puts Gitmo transfers on ice
  6. New York City mayor boosts city’s living wage to $13.13
  7. Feds say $100M in data hacked
  8. FCC backs end to NFL broadcast blackouts
  9. Panel says Wis. lawmaker likely broke House rules by advocating for companies in which he owned stock
  10. Medical marijuana use to get court test in Colo.
  11. Dallas hospital confirms 1st Ebola case in U.S.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.