RM Sotheby's Reports $526 Million in Global Auction Sales in 2017
RM SOTHEBY’S REPORTS $526 MILLION IN GLOBAL AUCTION SALES IN 2017
TOTAL SALES GROWTH OF 17 PERCENT OVER 2016 FURTHER EXTENDS RM SOTHEBY’S GLOBAL MARKET LEADERSHIP IN COLLECTOR CAR AUCTIONS
$22.55M ASTON MARTIN DBR1 IS TOP COLLECTOR CAR SALE OF 2017
BLENHEIM, ONTARIO (15 December 2017) – The RM Sotheby’s Group, comprising both RM Sotheby’s and RM Auctions*, has maintained and extended its leading market position in collector car auctions in 2017, reporting more than $526 million** in global auction sales with a strong 80 percent sell-through rate.
2017 results were driven by the sale of 2,852 lots (vehicles and memorabilia) across 14 auction events, with 119 automobiles achieving prices in excess of $1 million. The $526 million total surpasses the sales total of RM Sotheby’s primary competitors combined, and represents a 17 percent increase in sales over 2016 results.
Demonstrating the strength of the RM Sotheby’s Group’s international marketing efforts, more than 5,700 unique bidders participated in 2017 sales, hailing from 64 countries around the world. Significantly, 40 percent of bidders over the last year represented new RM Sotheby’s clientele as the auction house continues to expand its global reach. Furthering these efforts, the RM Sotheby’s Group launched a new website in September 2017. The company’s web presence has attracted over 10.9 million visits throughout the year, 58 percent of which were from new users.
“In all respects, 2017 represented a resounding success for RM Sotheby’s as we saw significant growth in our sales, market share, and continued positive momentum in the business despite challenging market conditions in which many major auction houses experienced declining sales,” says Kenneth Ahn, President, RM Sotheby’s, as he reflects on the year. “We saw the softness in the market continue in 2017, though rare, high-quality cars continued to achieve exceptional prices as evidenced by the Aston Martin DBR1, which sold for $22.55 million in Monterey, and the alloy Ferrari 250 GT LWB California Spider Competizione, which sold for $17.99 million in New York. As we look ahead to 2018, we are focused on maintaining our market leadership in the U.S. and Europe while continuing to grow our client relationships in Asia and the Middle East. Furthermore, we plan to better meet our clients’ needs in private sales and financing. We are excited and optimistic about the opportunities ahead.”
Ahn continues: “We have an incredibly dedicated global team of nearly 150 people who are committed to building lasting client relationships with sound advice, offering the highest quality motorcars in the world, and delivering successful results. We are grateful for the trust and confidence our clients have in us, and we will continue to work on exceeding our clients’ expectations in 2018.”
The end of 2017 marks one full year for Kenneth Ahn as President of the RM Sotheby’s Group. Under Ahn’s leadership, the company strengthened its executive team via the promotion of auction management veteran Gord Duff to Global Head of Auctions; Ian Kelleher, long-time specialist who has been integral to the Sotheby’s partnership, to Chief Marketing Officer; Jarrett Rothmeier, experienced financial professional and Ferrari consultant, to Chief Financial Officer; and the addition of Daniel Levy, former Managing Director at Goldman, Sachs & Co., as Head of Strategy and Corporate Development. Car Specialist Shelby Myers will also take the reigns as Global Head of Private Sales as the company expands this division for 2018. The RM Sotheby’s Group also continues to add to its global team of expert car specialists—which now totals 29, the largest in the industry—to enhance the company’s client coverage. Eight specialists have joined the team in 2017 in both the North American and European segments of the business.
Momentous Sales in 2017
2017 has marked numerous record-setting sales for the RM Sotheby’s Group, most significantly led by the top collector car sale of the year with the 1956 Aston Martin DBR1/1, which sold for $22,550,000 at RM Sotheby’s $133 million Monterey sale. The DBR1 not only smashed the previous auction record for the marque, it also entered the history books as the most valuable British car ever sold at auction.
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