ATG announces proposed acquisition of LiveAuctioneers

21/06/2021
Read Time: 3 Min

In an exciting milestone, Auction Technology Group plc (LON:ATG) has 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.”

Chris Watt, Managing Partner at ECI, commented: 

“This in an important milestone for ATG, off the back of a period of strong performance since its debut on the London Stock Exchange in February. The LiveAuctioneers acquisition will support further expansion into the key North American market, and support the auction industry with its ongoing digitalisation, helping to create a more sustainable circular economy. Congratulations to John-Paul, Phil and the teams at both ATG and LiveAuctioneers” 

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.

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