Auctionata online auction house plans New York expansion

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Berlin-based online art and auction house Auctionata (www.auctionata.com) aims to expand its operations to New York this autumn now that it has secured €21.5 million (US $30 million) in the course of a second funding round from the existing investors, among them Holtzbrinck, e.ventures, Earlybird and REN Invest.

“The commitment of the existing investors once again demonstrates the degree of trust that Auctionata has already established among customers within the market and proves the success of the business model of live-stream auctions,” said Dr Christian Nagel, partner of investor Earlybird. Including this second round, Auctionata has received approximately €37 million (US $52 million) in equity capital and funding.

Alexander Zacke, CEO, said: “We are proud that Auctionata has been able to establish itself within the art and auction market in less than a year from the inception of live-stream auctions. Auctionata has succeeded in winning the trust of sellers, buyers and investors and we are looking forward to leveraging this increase in capital by expanding Auctionata’s global activities and broadcasting online auctions live from New York as of November.”

Auctionata is an online destination for art, antiques, and collectibles in Europe. The company uses its patented technology to conduct live-stream auctions online within the areas of Old Masters, modern and contemporary art, porcelain, silver, antiques, design, photography, jewelry, watches, wine, Islamic art, Asian art, textiles as well as books and manuscripts.

In addition, it has an online shop curated by 250 experts that offers over 10,000 rare items for sale. A total of 17 online live auctions have already been conducted in 2014, with an average sell-through rate of 77%. The total net turnover of €4.6 million (US $6.4 million) has exceeded expectations and represents a growth rate of 550% compared to the same period last year.

The online shop accounts for 30% of the total turnover. Auctionata now has 75,000 customers from over 100 countries and 500,000 website visitors per month and holds the world record for a work of fine art sold by online auction with Egon Schiele’s “Reclining Woman” (sold for €1.8 million including buyer’s premium).