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RM Group of companies enjoys significant growth and record $360 million in auction sales during 2012
This majestic 1935 Duesenberg Model J Sedan sold for $456,500 at Auctions America’s flagship 2012 Auburn Fall Collector Car Weekend. The 2012 event attracted more than 52,500 enthusiasts to the historic Auburn Auction Park. Photo: Andrew N. Smith © courtesy Auctions America.
BLENHEIM, ON.- The RM group of companies, incorporating RM Auctions and Auctions America, continued its successful sales run in 2012, generating more than $360 million* in total sales to cement its position as the world’s largest collector car auction company. Eclipsing its record-setting performance of 2011, the impressive 2012 results represent an all-time high for the hobby and include the sale of more than 3,000 vehicles at 20 separate events in four countries.

“2012 has been another year of great performance and significant growth for the RM group of companies. Our two auction companies, each with their own brand identity, achieved their best performances to date in 2012 and enabled us to once again seamlessly serve the entire spectrum of the collector car market and offer enthusiasts a broad range of venues to best match their automobiles,” says Rob Myers, Chairman & Founder, RM group of companies. “The results achieved in 2012 reflect not only a continued healthy market for quality collector cars, but also the expertise of our car specialists, the largest and most experienced team in the industry, as well as our international footprint, targeted marketing and dedicated client service.”

A Year in Review

RM Auctions

RM Auctions continued to redefine the high-end auction experience in 2012 with its handpicked consignments, superb presentation, unparalleled client service, and international clientele. Once again, this combination produced strong results with RM alone generating almost $310 million in sales, including the sale of more than 1,300 vehicles at 12 separate auctions. Forty-nine motor cars accounted for million-dollar-plus transactions at auction, of which 18 vehicles fetched prices of more than $2 million each and six motor cars achieved individual results exceeding $5 million. In addition, the company realized an exceptional 91 percent sales rate at its catalogue events in 2012, demonstrating RM’s presentation and marketing expertise.

Highlights & Records
“Historic races, historic results” best describes RM’s greatest auction moments of 2012, with the company enjoying its top performances of the season in the motorsport meccas of Monaco and Monterey.

Headlining this year’s European sales, RM made a triumphant return to Monaco in May for its biennial sale during the Grand Prix de Monaco Historique weekend. Besting its record-setting debut performance of 2010, the two-day auction realized a spectacular $43 million to claim the title as one of Europe’s highest grossing collector car sales of all time, and most certainly the highest grossing collector car auction in Europe this year.

“2012 has been another vibrant year for the collector car hobby. The market has continued to show resilience to the worldwide economic storm with solid results recorded across the board, records continuing to tumble for rare and exceptional automobiles sold at auction, and select automobiles pushing the levels of high-end art to redefine the top-end of the market,” adds Max Girardo, Managing Director, RM Europe.

“In Europe, we witnessed a particularly strong appetite for ’50s and ’60s competition cars. This was also the experience in North America, where important sports and racing cars that were appropriately priced and offered fresh to the market enjoyed great success. All in all, it has been a terrific year —RM has once again proven itself to be the preeminent force in the collector car auction scene, and we look forward to continuing the momentum in 2013.”

Back in North America, the company’s flagship sale in Monterey, California, held during the famous Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance week, also posted exceptional results, with a spectacular $96 million in total sales and 90 percent of all lots sold. The impressive results represent the highest individual auction tally in RM history, and significantly, an almost 20 percent increase on its 2011 Monterey sale, generated no less by a smaller, more elite offering, as RM continued to focus on the top-tier of the market. It was at the Monterey sale when RM achieved its top sale of the 2012 season: a 1968 Ford GT40 Gulf / Mirage Lightweight Racing Car, used extensively as the camera car in Le Mans, which sold for $11,000,000 to set a new world record as the most expensive American automobile ever sold at auction.

In addition, RM achieved many other new auction records in 2012. Notable highlights include:

• a 1955 Ferrari 410 S Berlinetta for $8,250,000 – world record for a closed Ferrari sold at auction;

• a 1957 Ferrari 625 TRC Scaglietti Spider for $6,526,800 – world record for a 625 TRC at auction;

• a 1939 Horch Erdmann & Rossi Special Roadster for $5,170,000 – world record for a Horch sold at auction;

• a 1912 Oldsmobile Limited Five-Passenger Touring for $3,300,000 – world record for an Oldsmobile sold at auction;

• a 1952 Ferrari 225 Sport Spyder ‘Tuboscocca’ for $3,263,400 – world record for a 225 S at auction;

• a 1953 Bentley Continental R-Type Fastback Sports Saloon for $1,622,500 – world record for a Bentley Continental R-Type at auction; and

• a 1969 Alfa Romeo Tipo 33/3 Sports Racer for $1,595,440 – world record for an Alfa Tipo 33 at auction.

Single-Owner Collections
RM’s private and estate collections division enjoyed significant growth in 2012, hosting five standalone single-vendor sales at various locations across the United States and Europe. All five events achieved solid results, continuing RM’s strong track record for consistently exceeding estimates at private collection sales.

Highlighting this year’s private collections calendar was the magical Milhous Collection, presented by RM in association with Sotheby’s. The result of more than 50 years of collecting by brothers Robert & Paul Milhous, the auction—which featured a wonderful series of automobiles, mechanical musical instruments, and collectibles—enjoyed extraordinary success, generating more than $38 million to set a new benchmark for this type of private collection sale.

RM Europe hosted its first standalone single-vendor sale in 2012, lifting the gavel on Denmark’s famed Aalholm Automobil Museum. Attracting unprecedented interest from around the world, thousands of enthusiasts descended on the southern Danish island of Lolland for the single-day auction, with a three kilometer traffic queue to simply gain access to the venue. Total sales exceeded $12.9 million with fierce national interest in the collection leading to numerous lots far exceeding expectations.

RM will further consolidate its reputation as the specialist for private and estate collection sales in 2013 with two single-vendor sales already confirmed: the Bruce Weiner Microcar Museum sale, February 15–16 in Madison, Georgia and the Don Davis Collection, April 27, in Fort Worth, Texas.

Global Reach & Expansion
RM continued to expand its international network of clients in 2012 with entries handpicked from 24 countries around the world and bidders hailing from 56 countries. Worthy of special mention were a strong showing of enthusiasts from booming markets in the United Arab Emirates, the Russian Federation, India, China, Brazil and Australia, highlighting the effectiveness and reach of RM’s global marketing campaigns.

The growth of the private and estate collection division also supported client growth, specifically the Aalholm Automobil Museum in Denmark, and more recently, the John Staluppi Cars of Dreams Museum in Florida, where 85 percent and 52 percent of bidders, respectively, represented first time clientele. Repeat clientele at the company’s well-established annual sales were also joined by high levels of new interest, with 35 percent of bidders at the company’s Monaco auction representing new clientele, while almost 25 percent of bidders at RM’s annual London sale were first-time participants.

In addition, RM also enjoyed an expanded international footprint in 2012, establishing a new office in the Los Angeles area to increase the company’s presence in important markets and enable it to continue to deliver the unparalleled client service for which it is known.

Auctions America
The year 2012 was also a period of solid results and growth for Auctions America, with the Indiana-headquartered company recording its best performance to date. Specializing in the presentation of American classics, European sports cars, Detroit muscle, hot rods, and customs, Auctions America generated more than $52 million in sales. Unit volume was in excess of 2,100 vehicles and select automobilia sold at eight separate auctions held in some of the country’s leading automotive destinations. Growth also extended to the company’s global client base, with registered bidders representing 28 countries around the world. On a national level, bidders at Auctions America events in 2012 hailed from all 50 states across the U.S.

Headlining Auctions America’s 2012 season was the highly successful Auburn Fall Collector Car Weekend, held during the famed Auburn Cord Duesenberg Festival. This year’s Labor Day Weekend sale marked Auctions America’s largest event to date, with total sales surpassing $18.6 million and 76 percent of all lots sold. Reflecting the event’s steady and consistent growth over the past three years, more than 52,500 enthusiasts turned out to the historic Auburn Auction Park across the Labor Day Weekend, helping put Auburn “back on the map” as the Classic Car Capital of America. More than one-third of registered bidders represented new clientele.

In addition to its flagship Auburn Fall and Spring sales, the 2012 Auctions America calendar also included successful sales in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and Carlisle, Pennsylvania, where the team continued its partnership with Carlisle Events to deliver an ultimate automotive weekend experience.

Like RM Auctions, Auctions America also continued to demonstrate its expertise in the handling of private and estate collections in 2012, hosting two standalone single-vendor sales in addition to presenting a number of collections as featured attractions at its mainstream events. The Terry Bennett Collection and the National Military History Museum sales both enjoyed 100 percent sell-through rates, with more than 50 percent of bidders at each event representing first-time participants.

Continuing its mission to host events in the country’s leading automotive destinations, Auctions America will expand its national event calendar in 2013 with the addition of a new sale in Burbank, California, August 2–4. In addition, the Company’s Auburn Spring event will expand to incorporate the Antique Automobile Club of America’s inaugural Central Division National Spring Meet. Further information on both of these exciting events will be unveiled in early 2013.

“2012 has been another year of positive growth for the Auctions America team as reflected not only by our sales results, but our growing reputation as an auction house of choice for the sale of private and estate collections. We look forward to building on this foundation in 2013 as we expand our national footprint and continue our mission to be the best in our segment of the collector car market,” comments Donnie Gould, President, Auctions America.





Last Week News

December 22, 2012

Exhibition at Ariana Museum in Geneva reflects on agriculture and nutrition as art

Christie's announces a sale devoted to the artistic traditions that flourished in Europe from 1300 to 1600

Recently discovered 15th century masterwork to be offered at Sotheby's New York

Mexico's Maya heartland greets dawn of new era; Calendar cycle might not really end until Sunday

Two Greeks jailed for life over illegal antiquities, two more men for 20 and 16 years

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The Collection de l'Art Brut opens first European solo show devoted to Morton Bartlett

Rossi & Rossi announces spectacular Tibetan work from acclaimed Bronze exhibition at TEFAF Maastricht

Six artists from the border triangle of Germany, Switzerland and France exhibit at Kunsthalle Basel

Most concrete legacy of ex-dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, draws pop stars and presidents

British Prince Andrew's ex-partner actress Koo Stark denies 'painting theft'

Simon de Pury steps down as Chairman of Phillips de Pury & Company; The Mercury Group acquires company

Akron Art Museum's 90th anniversary year crescendos with a pledge of a major gift

Kaminski Auctions announces 20th Century Decorative Art and Design Sale

Paddington bares all in new station artwork

Hamburger Kunsthalle exhibits the work of Artist and author Annette Wehrmann

Daniel & Florence Guerlain Foundation announces winners of Contemporary Drawing Prize

Puerto Rican team wins Haitian cathedral contest

Georgia rebuilds Stalin monuments

December 21, 2012

Mexican archaeologists find another 1,200 year-old grave at Atzompa in Oaxaca

RISD museum opens an exhibition of beautiful and rarely seen prints and books

Louvre cements spot as world's most-visited museum; website seen more than 11 million visitors

Guggenheim Museum in New York acquires sculpture by artist Mark Grotjahn

Collection of paintings recording life behind the German trenches during World War I to go on sale

MoMA presents Christian Marclay's groundbreaking video installation "The Clock"

The Playmate as fine art: Seven contemporary artists interpret Playboy's iconic centerfold

Vancouver Art Gallery announces major donation of photographs by Robert Frank and Charles Gagnon

Christie's New York announces it will offer over 400 lots during Americana Week in January 2013

Bonhams in London appoints Matthew Haley as Head of Books, Maps and Manuscripts

Anonymous benefactor buys Frank Lloyd Wright-designed 1950s home in Phoenix

$66 million Thomas Kinkade estate dispute secretly settled by wife and girlfriend of artist

Rare watch by George Daniels sets new world auction record at £1.7 million Bonhams sale

Cant' afford art? Why not barter? Art4Barter holds twelfth exhibition this weekend

'Raiders of the Lost Ark' package mystery solved

Greenpeace protest at Louvre targets French airport project

Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian launches new website for students

America's signature for freedom series fountain pens lead Bonhams Fine Writing Instruments Sale

Jackson glove sells for record-breaking $200K

Early Colt revolver brings $284,410 in $1.8+ million Heritage Arms & Armor event

December 20, 2012

Field Museum cutting staff, overhauling operations and limiting the scope of its research

Christie's announces auction marking the first half century of the popular and luxurious interiors shop Guinevere

'Breakfast at Tiffany's' among 25 selections added to United States film registry

Rembrandt masterpiece "Portrait of Catrina Hooghsaet" back on display at National Museum Cardiff

Tower Hamlets Council's ownership of Henry Moore's 'Old Flo' challenged by Bromley

Important Judaica and Israeli & international art bring a combined $7.9 million at Sotheby's New York

Andy Warhol's Mao portraits excluded from the Beijing and Shanghai shows next year

Colby College Museum of Art's 26,000-square-foot Alfond-Lunder Family Pavilion to open in July

Sotheby's New York 20th Century Design & Tiffany Studios Sales total $12,877,127

BJ and Richeille Formento present photographs as part of a group exhibition at Edelman Arts

The Antiques Dealers Fair Limited ventures into London for the first time in January 2013

Bonhams to present art of the South Seas Sale in San Francisco in February 2013

Atlanta's High Museum of Art to host Collectors Evening to build permanent collection

China criticises French Qing dynasty seal auction

Tunisia to auction ousted despot's treasures

First exhibition in the UK of Croatian artist Sanja Iveković opens at The South London Gallery

Nine new exhibits debut at San Diego International Airport

Lluís Barba reworks iconic artworks in new exhibition at Dean Project

Art Asia Miami 2012 concludes its fifth year with strong sales and VIP attendance

December 19, 2012

Israel puts 5,000 images of the Dead Sea scrolls online in a partnership with Google

The main chapel of the Basilica of Santa Croce open for visits after five year restoration

Remains of man in armour found at 'Pompeii of Japan' by Gunma Archaeological Research Foundation

United States Geological Survey tracks the story of the Russian Crown jewels found in rare book

Contemporary artist Jeff Koons joins Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali in wine label art club

Sotheby's New York to offer The Andy Williams Collection of Navajo blankets in May 2012

Popol Vuh: The Mayan spiritual and philosophical book that remained secret until 1701

Wreck of Soviet submarine sunk during World War II found in Baltic sea: Sweden military

Joyce Pensato to receive 2012 Robert De Niro Sr. Prize for achievement in painting

Malaysian art boom is under way as industry seeks to replicate rampant success in other markets

Egyptian artist Iman Issa wins the Ist FHN Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona Award

New work by Roger Hiorns included in first solo museum exhibition in the Netherlands

Bonhams Period Art & Design Sale in San Francisco achieves strong results across categories

Four new exhibitions at the Israel Museum showcase wide range of styles and media

Custer items rule Heritage Auctions $2.5+ Million December Americana event

LA Art Show 2013 to feature top galleries, blockbuster special exhibitions

Teacher sole heir of $7.4M gold coin fortune

Garden Museum acquires unique Harold Gilman portrait

Amber: 40-million-year-old fossilised tree resin is Baltic gold

Spanish botched fresco artist sells work on eBay

December 18, 2012

Moscow Design Museum opens with an exhibition of Soviet post-war design

Louvre boss Henri Loyrette to step down at the end of his current term of office

Exhibition offers unique chance to see one of Picasso's masterworks in an intimate setting

National Portrait Gallery in London buys artist Craigie Aitchison's own slashed self-portrait

Gail Albert Halaban reimagines famous watercolors by Edward Hopper in exhibition at Edwynn Houk Gallery

French actress wins case against mother French-Romanian photographer Irina Ionesco's explicit photos

Art dealer Dorsey Waxter appointed President of the Art Dealers Association of America

Works by Siobhan Hapaska & Stephen McKenna combined in new exhibition at Kerlin Gallery

The Whitney Museum of American Art celebrates the topping out of its future home

Bryan Adams 'Exposed' embarks on tour, Goss-Michael Foundation in Dallas is first stop

New book shows uninterrupted series of photographs of North Korea's former leader looking at things

Rescued from a tag sale, Garrard centerpiece brings $32,500 at Heritage Auctions

Swedish Transport Agency says artist Fredrik Saeker can use painting as driving licence pic

Definitional Disruptions with Nel Aerts, Filip Gilissen and Hedwig Houben at Kunstraum

'Styling an American Family' features 1910s fashion at the Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms

Art on the Underground collaborate with BFI to present films from the National Archive at Canary Wharf

The inaugural Ian Potter Moving Image Commission awarded to Angelica Mesiti

Contested Chinese seal auctioned in Paris for 1.1 mln euros

Dutchman launches life-sized replica of Noah's Ark

December 17, 2012

French art masterpieces from the Centre Pompidou travel to Shanghai for the first time

Hello It's Me, Goodbye: Andy Warhol's cinema opens at The Osage Art Foundation

Brueghel: The fascinating world of Flemish art opens at Chiostro del Bramante

The Russian feminist punk rock group Pussy Riot rattles elites in age of YouTube

Second part of the full survey of Joel Meyerowitz's career opens at Howard Greenberg Gallery

New works that examine the issue of artistic inspiration by Kiki Smith on view at Barbara Gross Galerie

Director Peter Sellars and video artist Bill Viola to present production of Wagner's Tristan und Isolde

Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2012: Largest international contemporary art event ever to take place in India opens

Saber-toothed cat fossils found near Las Vegas by California's San Bernardino County Museum

Bruce Munro's second-ever U.S. exhibit of his lighting installations will transform Nashville's Cheekwood

Made Wianta's artworks made from raw buffalo skins, mirrors and nails on view in Bali

Emirati artist Ebtisam Abdulaziz's first solo show opens at The Third Line in Dubai

Two new Solo exhibitions open at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston

Four Latin American artists explore the potential of found objects and basic elements of the built environment

Event tickets imprinted with works of art inspire giving

American artist David Adamo's first solo show opens in Berlin at MD72

Frank! Exhibition of newly produced works by Francesco Pedraglio at Rowing in London

First museum retrospective exhibition of the ceramicist Chris Gustin's work on view at Fuller Craft Museum

Moscow Museum of Modern Art opens exhibition of works of art from its collection

Art Dubai announces Global Art Forum 2013

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