Marking the official opening of Sothebys
Dubai, under the Royal Patronage of H.H. Sheikh Nahyan Mabarak Nahyan, Minister of Culture & Knowledge Development, Sothebys President and CEO Tad Smith and Sothebys Chairman for the Middle East Edward Gibbs hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony today at the global auction houses new gallery and office space at Level 1, Gate Village Building 3, Dubai International Financial Centre, UAE.
This past Saturday was Sotheby's 273rd birthday, and we are proud to celebrate this and our forty years of service to clients in the Middle East by opening our new gallery and office space within the Dubai International Financial Centre," said Tad Smith, Sotheby's President and CEO. He added, "The Middle East, and especially the United Arab Emirates, has grown and prospered at an extraordinary pace. Sotheby's footprint in Dubai brings three centuries of history and expertise, and we look forward to contributing to an even greater future together on this fulcrum of the world's jewellery, art, and luxury car markets."
Edward Gibbs, Sothebys Middle East & India Chairman, adds: As our company evolves to meet the needs of every aspect of the art and luxury market globally, weve seen particular traction with our Middle Eastern clients. Our Dubai office enhances our ability to serve our fast-growing community of clients across the region and is geared to broadening the scope of what we offer to a whole new audience. Acquiring outstanding works of art, jewels or collectibles that we bring to the market is a thrilling quest, and we are delighted to be part of that journey both globally and locally."
The launch of Sothebys Dubai follows year-on-year growth in the number of Middle Eastern client participating in the companys global sales, resulting in a 30% increase in the number of buyers from the region over the last five years. Jewellery, Contemporary art, Impressionist & Modern and Old Master Paintings have driven this trajectory, while sales of Middle Eastern art have also grown, with an increase of 41% in the value spent by clients in the region in the period of 2015 to 2016 alone.
All of Sothebys sales are open to online bidding, with almost 20% of purchases across the business made online in 2016. This gateway into the companys offerings has gained significant traction with Middle Eastern clients, and in the last five years Sothebys has seen and an increase of 47% in the value theyve spent online.
This year Sothebys launched a new Luxury & Lifestyle Division, uniting the categories of jewellery, watches, wine, cars and experiences, as well as the relationship with Sothebys International Realty. Jewellery is a particular area of focus for Sothebys Middle Eastern clients, where there has been an increase of 46% in their spend from 2015 to 2016.
Marking the launch of Sothebys Dubai, the companys largest and most wide-ranging exhibition in Dubai to date is unveiled in its gallery today. Bringing together worldwide highlights from Sothebys international auction calendar spanning the forthcoming season, the exhibition stars highly sought-after masterpieces by celebrated artists from the region alongside myriad pieces of historical importance, and a selection of exceptional jewellery and watches. The exhibition will be open to the public from Tuesday 14 Sunday 19 March 2017 from 10am 8pm*. An expanded programme of year-round events will be held in the new gallery, including selling and non-selling exhibitions, events and talks, reflecting the spectrum of Sotheby's international sales and extensive client services. The office will complement the existing network of offices across the region.
Sothebys Dubai is the latest addition to the companys global network of 80 offices across 40 countries, each of which offers collectors the resources of Sothebys Financial Services, the worlds only full-service art financing company, as well as the collection advisory services of its subsidiary, Art Agency, Partners. Sothebys presents private sale opportunities in more than 70 categories, including S|2, the gallery arm of Sotheby's Global Fine Art Division, and two retail businesses, Sothebys Diamonds and Sothebys Wine.
The oldest company listed on the New York Stock Exchange (BID), Sothebys became the first international auction house when it expanded from London to New York (1955), the first to conduct sales in Hong Kong (1973), India (1992) and France (2001), and the first international fine art auction house in China (2012). Today, Sothebys presents auctions in 10 different salesrooms, including New York, London, Hong Kong and Paris, and Sothebys BidNow program allows visitors to view all auctions live online and place bids from anywhere in the world.