ATG announces proposed acquisition of LiveAuctioneers
Auction Technology Group plc (LON:ATG), the operator of the world’s leading marketplaces for curated online auctions, has today announced the proposed acquisition of LiveAuctioneers, one of North America’s favourite destinations for fine and decorative arts, antiques and luxury goods.
ATG has a long history of partnering with auctioneers to provide a suite of online products and services to maximise the value of the assets auctioneers sell for their consignors, while giving bidders access to a wide range of inventory in a trusted, convenient environment. The acquisition of LiveAuctioneers will allow the Group to extend its offering into the North American arts and antiques market, further enhancing the value it can bring.
The auction industry is going through a structural shift from offline to online and in so doing faces competition from large ecommerce companies selling secondary goods. A key part of ATG’s strategy is to help the auction industry evolve and compete. ATG’s acquisition of LiveAuctioneers enhances the Group’s ability to invest in key elements of the end-to-end buying and selling experience, thereby enhancing value for auctioneers, their consigners and bidders alike. It also demonstrates ATG’s commitment to supporting the auction industry by increasing its geographic reach to new bidders – as well as driving the appeal of second-hand items and the circular economy.
John-Paul Savant, CEO of ATG, commented:
“We are excited to announce the proposed acquisition of LiveAuctioneers. It enables ATG to enter the large and fast-growing North American art and antiques segment, further diversifying our business and bringing complementary auctioneers and bidders to our Group. It will strengthen our ability to invest in improving the buying experience, thereby making online auctions more attractive to bidders around the world and helping auctioneers realise higher asset values for their consignors. Our mission is to keep this important industry competitive in an increasingly digital world and, in turn, accelerate the pace of sustainable commerce by making it easier and more attractive to buy and sell through auctions. We are delighted to welcome the strong LiveAuctioneers team, which has a similar culture to ATG, and look forward to working closely together in the future.”
Phil Michaelson, CEO of LiveAuctioneers, commented
“LiveAuctioneers is proud of the relationship it has developed as a trusted partner to auction houses and the value it has delivered to those businesses over the last 19 years. As part of ATG, LiveAuctioneers’ partners will extend their online marketing to reach ATG’s network of bidders from 150 countries around the world. This, plus deeper investment in the end-to-end buyer experience will enable auctioneers to foster enhanced competition for, and the value of, the arts and antiques items being auctioned and expand the appeal of live online auctions as the best path by which to buy and sell secondary goods. We are excited by what the future holds for treasure hunters and the broader auction community.”
Through the proposed acquisition, thousands of auction houses that run their auctions on LiveAuctioneers will benefit from the option to list their auctions on ATG’s existing marketplaces and reach a wider audience of bidders. Likewise, ATG’s existing auctioneer clients will have the option to list on LiveAuctioneers, reaching bidders in North America who annually win over one million items on LiveAuctioneers.com. Further, payment, back-office and marketing solutions can more efficiently be made mutually available to ATG’s and LiveAuctioneers’ partner auction houses.
ATG’s existing arts and antiques marketplaces are thesaleroom.com, which was founded by ATG in 2006, and German fine art and antiques marketplace Lot-tissimo, which was acquired by ATG in 2018. The Group also operates four marketplaces in the industrial and commercial sector.
LiveAuctioneers.com will continue to operate with its headquarters in New York City and be led by CEO Phil Michaelson. The transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals.